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of the 




Printer to the King's Most Excellent Majesty 


THK HONOURABLE Mb. John A^.bew Hope, o.s.o., m-C, --^^^^ 

Marshall Archibald Campbell, Esquire 

A. Vance Chapman, Esquire 

William Henry Clarke, Esquire, b.a. 

Charles Richard Conquergood, Esquire 

Edward Fawcett Henderson, Esquire 

Ruth S. Houck, (Mrs. John E. Houck) 

Arthur Kelly, Esquire, K.c, B.A. 

Blanche Marshall, b.a., ll.d. (Mrs. Robert J. Marshall) 

Norman McLeod, Esquire, m.a., b.paed. 

Ralph Tames Neelands, Esquire, m.b. 

Helen Isabel New, c.b.e. (Mrs. Ryland H. New) 

Joseph M. Pigott, Esquire, c.b.e., k.c.s.g. 

LoFTUS Henry Reid, Esquire 

Charles Rupert Sanderson, Esquire, m.a., 

Miss Helen Margaret Sheppard 

Sidney Earle Smith, Esquire, k.c, m.a., ll.b., ll.d., d.c.l., f.r.s.c. 

Henri Saint-Jacques, Esquire, k.c, b.a., 

The Venerable Archdeacon W. A. Townshend,, d.d. 

William L. Whitelock, Esquire, d.d.s. 

Secretary: R. W. B. Jackson, Esquire, b.a., ph.d. 
Assessor: F. S. Rivers, Esquire, b.a., b.paed. 
Counsel: Major Angus Dunbar, k.c 

The late Mr. Fred Molineux, o.b.e., was also a member of the Royal Com- 
The^r^.^^ O^^ M.~; was, until his death in 1945, Assessor 

to the Commission. 


GEORGE THE SIXTH by the Grace of God of Great Britain, 

Ireland and the British Dominions 
beyond the Seas KING, Defender of 
the Faith, Emperor of India. 


of Port Arthur, WILLIAM HENRY CLARKE of Toronto, CHARLES 
HENDERSON of Toronto, MRS. R. J. MARSHALL of Toronto, NORMAN 
McLEOD of Toronto, FRED MOLINEUX of Hamilton, DR. RALPH 
JAMES NEELANDS of Kirkland Lake, MRS. RYLAND NEW of Oakville 
JOSEPH M. PIGOTT of Hamilton, LOFTUS HENRY REID of Toronto' 
MRS. J. HOUCK of Brampton and ARTHUR KELLY of Toronto. 


WHEREAS in and by Chapter 19 of The Revised Statutes of Ontario, 
1937, entitled "The Public Inquiries Act", it is enacted that whenever Our 
Lieutenant-Governor in Council deems it expedient to cause inquiry to be 
made concerning any matter connected with or affecting the good govern- 
ment of Ontario, or the conduct of any part of the public business thereof, 
or of the administration of justice therein, and such inquiry is not regulated 
by any special law, he may, by Commission appoint a person or persons 
to conduct such inquiry, and may confer the power of summoning any per- 
son or persons to conduct such inquiry, and may confer the power of sum- 
moning any person and requiring him to give evidence on oath, and to 
produce such documents and things as the Commissioners deem requisite 
for the full investigation of the matters into which thev are appointed to 

AND WHEREAS Our Lieutenant-Governor in Council of Our Prov- 
ince of Ontario deems it expedient to cause inquiry to be made concemincr 
the matters hereinafter mentioned; * 

NOW KNOW YE that WE, having and reposing full trust and con- 
fidence in you the said Honourable Mr. Justice John Andrew Hope, 

Marshall Archibald Campbell, Vance Chapman, William Henry Clarke, 
Charles Richard Conquergood, Edward Fawcett Henderson, Mrs. J. Houck, 
Arthur Kelly, Mrs. R. J. Marshall, Norman McLeod, Fred Molineux, Dr. 
Ralph James Neelands, Mrs. Ryland New, Joseph M. Pigott, Loftus Henry 
Reid, Miss Helen Sheppard, Charles Rupert Sanderson, Dr. Sidney Earle 
Smith, Henri St. Jacques, Rev. Canon William A. Townshend, and Dr. 
WilHam L. Whitelock, DO HEREBY APPOINT you to be Commissioners 
to inquire into and report upon the provincial education system, and 
without derogating from the generality thereof, including courses of study, 
text books, examinations, financing, and the general system and scheme of 
elementary and secondary schools involving public schools, separate 
schools, continuation schools, high schools, collegiate institutes, vocational 
schools, schools for the training of teachers and all other schools under the 
jurisdiction of the Department of Education, as vi^ell as the selection and 
training of teachers, inspectors, and other officials of such schools, and the 
system of provincial and local school administration. 

AND WE DO HEREBY CONFER on you Our said Commissioners 
the power to summon any person or corporation and require him to 
give evidence on oath and to produce such documents and things as you 
Our said Commissioners deem requisite for the full investigation of the 
matters into which you are appointed to examine, by subpoena signed by 
the Chairman or any one of the Commissioners hereby appointed; 

AND WE DO HEREBY APPOINT you, the Honourable Mr. Justice 
John Andrew Hope, to be Chairman of the said Commission; 

TO HAVE, HOLD AND ENJOY the said office and authority of Com- 
missioners for and during the pleasure of Our Lieutenant-Governor in 
Council for Our Province of Ontario. 

IN TESTIMONY WHEREOF We have caused these Our Letters to 
be made Patent, and the Great Seal of Our Province of Ontario to be here- 
unto affixed. 



At Our City of Toronto in Our said Province, this twenty-first day of 
March in the year of Our Lord one thousand nine hundred and forty-five 
and in the ninth year of Our Reign. 

BY COMMAND (signed) 


Provincial Secretary. 

To His Honour, the Honourable Ray Lawson, O.B.E., LL.D., D.C.L., 
The Lieutenant-Governor of Ontario 


By direction and on behalf of the Royal Commission on Education, 
appointed by Order-in-Council under date of March 21st, 1945, I have the 
honour to submit our Report. 

It is with deep regret and a sense of severe loss that I record the death 
of one of Your Commissioners, the late Mr, Fred Molineux, O.B.E., in 
March last. Prior to the time of his final illness, Mr. Molineux worked 
assiduoush^ and conscientiously on our common task. His contribution was 
at all times recognized and valued by his fellow-Commissioners. 

The Report consists of the following: 

1. The Majorit)^ Report signed by fifteen of the remaining twenty 
members of Your Commission, and, appended to it, three memo- 
randa signed in all by four of the fifteen Commissioners— two of 
these four differ on three of the points contained in the Majorit\' 
Report, and the other two Commissioners difiFer on two of the 
same three points. 

2. A Minority Report signed by four Commissioners who are not 
signatories to the Majority Report, and appended thereto a fur- 
ther memorandum by one of these four Commissioners. 

3. A separate statement by the remaining Commissioner. 

In submitting the complete Report, may I, as Chairman, express and 
gratefully record my deep appreciation of the loyal co-operation, valuable 
assistance, and unremitting work of all members of Your Commission with- 
out in any degree excepting those whose deep-rooted personal convictions 
did not permit them to subscribe to the Majority' Report. 

I have the honour to be, 

Your obedient servant, 

(signed) J. A. Hope 
The Royal Commission on Education. 
December 15, 1950. 


1. We, the undersigned Commissioners, appointed by Order-in-Council 
dated the 21st day of March, 1945, to inquire into and report upon the sys- 
tem and state of education in the pubhcly supported schools of the province, 
humbly beg to submit our Report. 

2. From the outset of our labours we were impressed with the wide 
scope of the investigation assigned to us, but the true immensity and com- 
plexity of the task became more and more evident as we proceeded. It was 
only as we learned of the time required by earher committees of inquiry 
in other jurisdictions as well as in this province to deal with specific phases 
only of the general problem embraced by the broad terms of our reference, 
that we became reconciled to the great length of time demanded. 

3. We began our inquiry in April, 1945. The Commission as a whole 
sat a total of 142 days, and the Commissioners individually, quite aside from 
their work on specific committees, devoted months of unremitting toil to 
their task. In addition, committees of the Commission to which were 
assigned particular inquiries sat a total of 116 days. The Editing Committee, 
appointed in September, 1948, to supervise the preparation of the final draft 
of our Report, sat a total of 33 days, and, further, individual members of 
this Committee devoted the equivalent of approximately 60 days of full- 
time work to the criticism and editing of drafts of chapters. 

4. At the beginning of our investigations, a general invitation was ex- 
tended to all public bodies and organizations as well as to private indi- 
viduals to submit briefs and give evidence. The response was magnificent; 
258 briefs and 44 memoranda were submitted. The majority of those who 
submitted briefs appeared before the Commission for discussion of their 
views. Public sessions were generally held in Toronto, but, in order that 
the members of the Commission might gain a more intimate knowledge 
of the educational problems peculiar to the territorial districts and in order 
that the presentation of briefs and oral evidence by individuals and organ- 
izations in that part of our province might be facilitated, a number of pub- 
lic sessions were held at strategetically situated centres in Northern Ontario. 
Evidence of our indebtedness to these organizations and individuals for 
assistance thus rendered may be found throughout our Report; their con- 
tributions and willing co-operation are appreciated by the Commission. 

5. With terms of reference so wide and with so many persons qualified 
through experience and training to express an opinion on specific aspects 
of education, it was not infrequently a matter of considerable diflBcult\' to 
select the witnesses to furnish oral evidence and the experts to submit 
special reports. Our invitations to such individuals received readv and 


generous response. We wish at tliis time to express our gratitude for their 
advice and assistance. In particular, officials of the Department of Edu- 
cation were unfailing in their courtesy and co-operation in appearing before 
us to give evidence and in furnishing statistical and other information re- 
quested from time to time. 

6. In addition to the foregoing phases of our investigation, individual 
members and group of members of the Commission and its staff visited 
other provinces and countries to obtain information from officials and 
accredited persons and authorities. They received uniformly cordial assis- 
tance. We record our gratitude to those individuals and officials in England, 
Scotland, Northern Ireland, Sweden, Denmark, and the United States of 
America, as well as to those in our sister provinces of the Dominion, who 
generously made available helpful information and advice based upon their 
wide experience and invariably extended to us gracious hospitality. 

7. We express to Your Honour the deep sense of loss which we have 
sustained in the death of our friend and fellow-Commissioner, Mr. Fred 
Molineux, through whose deep interest in many special phases of education 
we were privileged to enjoy wise and helpful counsel. We were fortunate, 
as a Commission, in that Mr. Molineux's illness did not deprive us of his 
advice until we had reached our main and governing conclusions, which 
he had helped to draft. 

8. We wish to place on record our unstinted and unqualified appre- 
ciation of the work of, and our gratitude to, the staff placed at our service 
in fulfilling our task, in particular to our Secretary, Dr. Robert W. B. 
Jackson, and our Assessors, the late Dr. V. K. Greer, and Mr. F. S. Rivers. 
Dr. Greer's sudden death on November 11th, 1945, was a grievous loss to 
the Commission. Long a valued official of the Department of Education, 
where, at the time of our appointment, he was Superintendent of Elemen- 
tary Education, Dr. Greer, by virtue of his vast knowledge and experience, 
sound judgment, and common sense, was a tower of strength and a wise 
counsellor in the initial stages of our labours. We were indeed fortunate to 
secure as his successor an official of the Department whose valuable pro- 
fessional experience and quiet sensible approach to the problems confront- 
ing us, together with his indefatigable industry, have contributed so im- 
mensely to our work. 

9. Our Secretary, Dr. Jackson, has displayed unremitting zeal, great 
organizing ability, clear judgment, and a complete grasp of the problems 
involved. The tact, energy, and enthusiasm of both these officials have gone 
far to smooth the way and lighten the work of the Commission. They have 
been fertile in suggestions as well as clear and accurate in handling detail. 
To Dr. Jackson's conversance with statistical methods and his conspicuous 
abiUtv in dealing with them, we are especially indebted. We desire to bring 
to the notice of the University of Toronto and the Department of Education 
our strong sense of the value of the services which these gentlemen have 


rendered to die Commission, and which they are capable of rendering to 
the cause of education in this province not solely because of their personal 
and professional qualifications but particularly because of the vast knowl- 
edge and understanding of all aspects of education acquired in the course 
of their work with our Commission, The services of these officials should 
not be lost to the province in the future. 

10. Our Counsel, Major Angus Dunbar, K.C., gave valuable assistance 
during our public sessions and meetings of committees through his kindly 
but masterly examination of the witnesses appearing before us. At a later 
stage of our work, particularly during the preparation of preliminary drafts 
of our Report, we frequently called upon his services for legal advice and 

11. We wish to record, also, our appreciation of the valuable assistance 
given by other members of our stafiF. To Mr. E. Brock Rideout we are par- 
ticularly indebted for his services to one of our committees and for his 
careful and detailed study and report to the Commission as a whole upon 
the many problems associated with our investigation of the administration 
and supervision of education in this province and in other jurisdictions. 
In the preliminary stages of the preparation of our Report, we were for- 
tunate to secure the services of Mr. G. E. Johnson, High School Inspector, 
and Dr. F. W. Minkler, Public School Inspector, who acted as consultants, 
and from whom we obtained expert advice on particular phases of elemen- 
tary and secondary education. The Department of Education again made 
the services of Mr. Johnson available to us when these were required for 
certain tasks associated with the preparation of the final draft of our Report. 
The editing of the final draft of the Report was expedited through the ex- 
pert assistance of Professor and Mrs. B. Wilkinson. Our public and private 
sessions were accurately and efficiently recorded by Mr. H. O. Taylor and 
Mr. R. N. Dickson. Our office staff, under the able direction of Mrs. Aileen 
Black, prepared copies of the many reports and memoranda required; their 
devotion to duty, and the accuracy, efficiency, and expedition with which 
they did the clerical work did much to aid us. For the ser^•ices of all these 
members of our staff we are indeed deeply grateful. 

12. Our public sessions in Toronto were held in the Senate Chamber of 
the University of Toronto, our private sessions in the Board Room of the 
Toronto Board of Education, and the meetings of our Editing Committee 
in the Board Room of the Toronto Public IJbrarv. To meet in such delight- 
ful surroundings was a pleasure and served to lighten our hours of long and 
arduous labour. Our sincere thanks are extended to the Board of Governors 
of the University of Toronto, to the Toronto Board of Education, and to 
the Toronto Public Library Board for their kindness in placing such excel- 
lent accommodation at our disposal. 

13. We wish also to express our appreciation to the follo\Wng indi- 
viduals, organizations, and publishers for permission to quote copyright 


materials properly attributed to them in the text: American Council on 
Education; Clarke, Irwin & Company Limited; Messrs. William Collins 
Sons & Company Limited; J. M. Dent & Sons (Canada), Limited; Depart- 
ment of Rural Education of the National Education Association of the 
United States; His Majesty's Stationery Office, Edinburgh, Scotland; His 
Majesty's Stationery Office, London, England; Houghton Mifflin Company, 
The Riverside Press; The Library Association, London, England, and Mr. 
L. R. McColvin (author); Mrs. Margaret McCutcheon, for the late John 
M. McCutcheon; New Zealand Council for Educational Research; Dr. A. C. 
Lewis, Dean, Ontario College of Education; The Ryerson Press; Stanford 
University Press; Teachers College, Columbia University, Bureau of Publi- 


We have made references throughout the text of the Report to the 
various statutes of the Province of Ontario. Since the preparation of our 
Report, the statutes of the province have been revised and issued as the 
Revised Statutes of Ontario, 1950. It should be noted that all our references 
are to earlier editions of these statutes or amendments thereto, not to the 
statutes in their present form (R.S.O. 1950). 


Members of the Royal Commission ox Education in Ontario 
Royal Warrant 
Letter of Transmittal 




I. The Educational Scene 

Ontario Today ]: 

The Pioneer Period, 1800-1840 o 

The Period of Expansion, 1840-1870 10 

The Period of Consohdation, 1870-1900 15 

The Twentieth Centurv lo 

11. Aims of Education 

Bases for Various Educational Philosophies or Theories 24 

l-undamental Issues in Education 9^ 

Cardinal Virtues ^^ 

The Force of Habits, Customs, and Conventions OQ 

The General Scope of the Curriculum oT 

The Role of the Teacher V. 

The Development of the Whole Child o^ 

Aims ^^ 

To Develop Capacity to Apprehend and Practise Basic Virtues 36 

To Develop Talent to Understand the Views of Others '^' 

and to Express One's Own Views Effectively 37 

To Deve op Competence for a Suitable Occupation 37 

To Develop Good Health ^ « ' 

To Develop Aptitudes for Recreation 00 

To g:;:ioT "i^^^^ "^""^ "^-"-^ "^'^"-^ ?« 

Conclusion _^ 

"' ErcroN^''^^"^"™^ °^ Elementary and Secondary 

Extension of Compulsorv School Attendance 47 

Provision of Stajres Within the Educational System 47 

Stages m Child Development 1 

Proposed Stages of the Educational Svstem 5? 

Provision of Educational Facilities ' 1 

A. Elementarv Education J; 

(1) Nursery Schools and Classes S 

(2) Kindergartens 'Z'^ 

R kll ^l^'^^'if'^' School (grades I to VI inclusive) ^4 

B. Secondary Education e? 



C. Further Education 56 

(1) Junior Colleges 56 

(2) Provincial Technical Institutes and Apprenticeship 

Training 58 

(a) Provincial Technical Institutes 58 

(b) Apprenticeship Training 59 

(c) Organization of Programmes of Technical 

Education and Trade Training 59 

(3) Part-time Education 61 
The Reorganized Educational System 62 
Implementation of the Reorganization 64 

IV. The Pupil's Growth and Progress 66 

Patterns of Child Growth 67 

Physical and Motor Development 68 

Social and Emotional Development 69 

Mental Development 72 

Implications for the School Programme 75 

General Implications 75 

Implications for Kindergartens 80 

Implications for Elementarv Schools 80 

Implications for the Secondary School 82 

Implications for Further Education 83 

The Measurement of Pupil Growth 84 

School Examinations 87 

Recommendations 93 

Student Counselling 96 

V. Programmes for the Schools of the Reorganized 

Educational System 100 

Inti-oduction . 100 

Co-education 104 

The CuiTiculum 106 

A. Nursery Schools and Kindergartens 106 

B. Elementary Schools 108 

C. Secondary Schools 110 

D. Fiu-ther Education 117 

(1) Junior College Courses 117 

(2) Provincial Technical Institute Courses 121 

(3) Part-time Day and Evening Courses 122 
Constructing Curricula and Courses of Study 122 

VI, Social, Spiritual, and Other Aspects of Education 123 

Religious Education 123 

Public Elementary Schools 123 

Secondary Schools and Junior Colleges 127 

Religious Emblems 128 

Health Education and Services 129 

Temperance Education 132 

Sex Education " 134 

Education for Homemaking 135 

Agricultural Education 137 

Education in Rural Areas 139 

Co-curricular Activities 141 


Audio- Visual Aids in Education 141 

Textbooks and Classroom Supplies I45 

Libraries in Ontario 249 

(1) Classroom Libraries 150 

(2) School Libraries 151 

(3) Public Libraries 152 

(4) Provincial Library " 154 
Research and Experimentation in Education 155 
Citizenship and the School Programme 161 

Contribution of School Subjects 165 

(1) Religious Education 166 

(2) Enghsh 156 

(3) Social Studies 169 

(4) Other School Subjects 172 
Contribution of Other Phases of the School Programme 173 

Horns of Studv lYg 

School Terms and Holidays I73 
Interruptions of the School Programme - 174 

Daily Sessions I74 

Use of the Enghsh Language in Instruction and 

Communication in Pubhcly Supported Schools 175 

VII. CeiXtralizatiox and Decentralization in Adahnistration 178 

Centralization and Decentralization in Ontario 180 
Development Toward the Centrahzation of Educational 

Administration in Ontario 183 

Decentralization and Centrahzation Under Other Jurisdictions 187 

England and Wales 187 

Australia igi 

(a) Advantages of a Centrahzed System 191 

(b) Disadvantages of a Centralized System 192 
The United States of America 192 
Other Provinces of Canada I95 

Summary 197 
Appendix — Supporting Evidence Relating to 

Centrahzation and Decentrahzation 198 

VIII. Development antd Present Statl's of Local School 

Administration 904 
The Development of Units of Administration and Local 

Education Authorities in Ontario 204 

Elementary Education 204 

Secondary Education 209 

Municipal Boards of Education 212 

The Municipal Structure of Ontario 213 

The Present Status of Local Units of School Administration 

and Local Education Authorities in Ontario 214 
Administrative Units and Local Education Authorities for 

Elementary Education Only 217 

For Public School Education Onlv 217 

(1) In Rural Areas 217 

(2) In Urban Communities 220 
Administi-ative Units and Local Education Authorities for 

Secondary Education Only 221 


High School Dishicts and their Boards 221 

Continuation Schools Districts and their Boards 224 
Administiative Units and Local Education Authorities for 

Public Elementary and Secondary Education 226 

Union Boards of Education 227 

Municipal Boards of Education 228 
Counties and Local Municipalities and their Councils as Local 
Units of School Administration and Local Education 

Authorities 229 
The County Council as an Intermediate Education 

Authority 229 

Resident, County, and Non-resident Pupils 230 
City, Town, and Village Councils as Intermediate Local 

Education Authorities 231 

Complexity of Local School Unit Organization in Ontario 235 

IX. Local School Administration Under Other Jurisdictions 238 

Units and Boards in England and Wales 238 
Internal Organization and Administration of a County 

Education Authority 239 

Composition of Various Educational Bodies in England 239 

Joint Education Boards 242 

Joint Education Committees 242 

Comments on the English Administrative System 242 

Units and Boards in Scotland 243 
Motivating Factors in the Development of Larger Units of 

Administration in Canada and the United States 243 

Units and Boards in the United States of America 245 

(1) The County-Unit States 245 

(2) States Using the Township and Town as Basic Units 

of Administration 248 

(3) States Using the Dish-ict as a Basic Unit of 

Administration 248 

(a) Reorganization bv County Committees 249 

(b) The Central Rural District Law of New York State 251 

(c) The County as an Intermediate Unit in Ohio 251 
Summary 251 

Units and Boards in Canada 252 

British Columbia 252 

Alberta 255 

Nova Scotia 256 

New Brunswick 257 

Saskatchewan 260 

Manitoba 262 

Quebec 263 

Prince Edward Island 265 

Newfoundland 266 

Ontario 266 

Summary for Canada 266 

X. Local Units of School Administration in the Proposed 

Reorganization 268 

Current Opinion 268 

Nature of a Satisfactory Unit « 268 



Relation Between Local School Units and Municipal 

Boundaries 269 

Status of Urban Centres 270 

Population as a Basis 271 

Area as a Basis 273 

Sub-units of the Basic Unit 273 

Ad Hoc Boards or Municipal Councils 274 

Elected or Appointed Boards 275 
Criteria for the Nature and Size of the Local Unit of School 

Administiation 275 
Alternative Plans for the Reorganization of Local School 

Units 282 
Recommendations Relating to Local Units of School 

Administration 284 

Post-elementary Education 284 

Public Elementary Education 287 

XL Local Education Authorities in the Proposed Reorganization 289 

Types of Local Education Authorities for Ontario 289 

Plan A: Regional Board of Education (Urban Type) 290 

Plan B: Regional Board of Education (Rui'al Type) 290 

Plan C: Autonomous Post-elementary School Boards and 

Public School Boards 291 
Powers and Duties of Local Education Authorities in Ontario 

Under the Proposed Reorganization 292 

Maintaining Local Interest in Education 297 
Number of Members, and Method and Time of Election of 

Local Education Authorities 297 
Optimum Number of Members of a Local Education 

Authority 298 

Method of Election 298 

Time of Election 299 

Conclusions 300 

Term of Office and Method of Retii-ement of School Board 

Members 301 

Remuneration of Members of School Boards 301 
Relationship Between Local Education Authorities and 

Municipal Councils 303 

Qualification and Disqualification of School Board Members 305 

Advisory Vocational Committees 307 

XII. Other Aspects of the Local Administration of Education 309 

Transportation of Pupils ■ 309 

Services in Lieu of Transportation 312 

Residences for Teachers 313 

Non-resident Pupils 313 

Post-elementary Schools 313 

Elementary Schools 314 

Enforcement of Compulsory Attendance 316 

Administration of Health Services in Schools 317 

XIIL The Supervision of Education 321 

Concepts of Administi-ation, Supervision, and Inspection 321 

Development of Administration and Supervision of Education 

in Ontario 322 


Development Prior to 1846 322 

Development Under Ryerson, 1846-1876 324 

Development since 1876 327 

Present Organization for, and Administration of, the 

Supervision of Education 330 

Under the Central Education Authority 330 

Supervision under Local Education Authorities 331 

Training of Supervisory Personnel 332 

Duties and Training of School Business Officials 333 

Recommendations Relating to the Supervision of Education 334 

Organization for Supervision 334 

Qualifications of Supervisory Officials 337 

Qualifications of Business Administrators 339 

XIV. The Centkal Education Authority 340 

Natui-e of the Central Authority 340 
Development and Present Status of the Department of Education 341 

Present Organization of the Department of Education 342 
Weaknesses in the Present Organization of the Department 

of Education 348 

Proposed Reorganization of the Department of Education 349 

Division of Elementary Education 352 

Division of Secondary Education 352 

Special Education Branch 352 

Division of Further Education 353 

Division of Professional Education 353 

Division of Curriculum 353 

Division of Business Administration 354 

Division of the Registrar . 354 

Public Library Services 355 

Salaries and Qualifications of Departmental Personnel 355 

Office Accommodation for the Department of Education 356 

Organization and Operation of the Divisions of the 

Department of Education 356 

Central Advisory Council 356 

Other Departments of Government 358 

Department of Health 358 

Department of Labour 359 

Department of Agriculture 359 

Department of Mines 360 

Department of Lands and Forests 360 

Department of Municipal Aff^airs 360 

Inter-Departmental Committee on Education 360 

Acts and Regulations Respecting Education 361 

XV. Exceptional Children 363 

Classification of Exceptional Chikken 363 

(1) Physically Atypical 364 

(2) Mentally Atypical 364 

(3) Attitudinally Atypical 365 

(4) Socially Atypical 365 
Development of Special Education for Atypical Children 365 
The Administration of Special Education in Ontario Today 372 

Discovery and Admission of Pupils 374 

Special Education Progiammes 375 


Recommendations on Special Education 377 

Administration 380 

Ineducables 383 

Speech-defective, Crippled, and Home-bound 383 

Far-away and Neglected 384 

Partially Sighted and Blind 384 

Hard-of-hearing and Deaf 385 

Mentally Atypical 389 

Attitudinally Atypical 391 

XVI. ■/ History of the French Language in the Publicly 

Supported Schools of Ontario 392 

Prior to 1885 392 

From 1885 to 1911 398 

Report of Commissioner F. \V. Merchant in 1912 405 

Regulation 17 (See also Appendices A and B) 408 

Merchant-Scott-Cote Committee and its Report 411 

Since 1927 415 

Appendix A — Instructions 17, 1912 421 

Appendix B — Instructions 17, 1913 423 

XVII. Recommendations on the Teaching and Use of the 

French Language . 426 

Present Position 426 
Population of Ontario of French Racial Origin and of 

French Mother Tongue 426 

Status of the French Language in Canada and in Ontario 428 
The Programme in those Public, Separate, and Secondary 
Schools in which Provision is made for Special Courses 

in French 430 
Opinions Relating to the Teaching and Use of French in 

Publicly Supported Schools 435 
The Teaching and Use of French in the Schools of the 

Reorganized Educational System 438 
French as a Subject of Study in Elementary and Post- 
elementary Schools 438 
French as a Subject of Study and Language of 

Instruction and Communication in Elementary Schools 438 
Ceneral Conditions Governing Granting of Permission 439 
Use of English and French 442 
Programme of Studies 444 
Supervision of Instruction 448 
Professional Preparation of Teachers 451 
Advanced French Courses in Publicly Supported Post- 
elementary Schools 454 
Correspondence Courses 456 

XVIII,\/Origin and Development of Separate Schools in Ontario 458 

Number and Growth 458 

Legislation Affecting Separate Schools Prior to Confederation 461 
Changes Since Confederation in Legislation Affecting Roman 

Catholic Separate Schools 474 
Roman Catholic Separate Schools and Secondary School 

Education 474 

Adminishation of Roman Catholic Separate Schools 476 


Assessments, Borrowing Powers, and Grants 
Appendix (Act of 1863) 






Roman Catholic Separate Schools in the Reorganized 

Educational System 492 

The Problem of Roman Catholic Separate Schools 492 

Status of Roman Catholic Separate Schools 500 
Roman Cathohc Separate Schools in Relation to the New 

Stages of Education 503 

The Educational Progiamme in Roman Catholic Separate 

Schools in the Proposed Reorganization of the Educational 

System 506 

The Teaching Staff of Roman Catholic Separate Schools 509 

Administration of Roman Catholic Separate Schools 512 

Formation of a Roman Catholic Separate School Corporation 513 

Section 21 of The Separate Schools Act 515 

Union Separate School Boards 515 

Qualifications of Trustees and Electors 519 

Powers and Duties of Trustees 520 

Attendance of Pupils 521 

Financing Roman Catholic Separate Schools 522 

Implementing Our Recommendations 532 

Protestant and Coloured Separate Schools in the 

Reorganized Educational System 534 

Separate Schools for Coloured People 535 

Protestant Separate Schools 536 

The Teaching Staff of the Publicly Supported Schools 

OF Ontario 540 

Professional Preparation of Teachers for Elementary Schools 540 
Pre-service Training of Teachers for Elementary Schools 

Today 544 

In-service Training of Elementary School Teachers Today 545 

Professional Preparation of Teachers for Secondary Schools 546 
Pre-service Training of Teachers for Secondary Schools 

Today 548 

In-service Training of Secondary School Teachers Today 549 
Professional Preparation of Prospective Vocational School 

Teachers 549 

Training of Teachers of Vocational School Subjects Today 550 

(1) Teachers of Trade Subjects 550 

(2) Teachers of Commercial Subjects 551 

(3) Teachers of Home Economics (General) 551 

(4) Teachers of Industrial Arts and Crafts 551 

(5) Vocational School Principal's Certificate 552 
Number and Distribution of Teachers in Service 552 
Supply of Teachers 556 

(1) Elementary Schools 556 

(2) Secondary Schools 560 

Recommendations with Respect to the Professional 

Preparation of Teachers 564 

Teacher Training in Other Provinces and Countries 565 

Canada 565 





England 569 

United States 570 

Trends in Teacher Education in England and the United 

States 571 

General Organization of the Proposed Teacher-Training 

Programme for Ontario 572 

Proposed Programme for the Training of Prospective Teachers 

for Elementary Schools 579 

Buildings for Junior Colleges of Education 579 

Staffs of Junior Colleges of Education 580 

Requirements for Admission to a Junior College of 

Education 581 

Programme of Junior Colleges of Education 582 

Proposed Programme for the Training of Prospective Teachers 

for Secondary Schools and Junior Colleges 584 

Buildings of the Ontario College of Education 586 
Staff of the Ontario College of Education 587 

Requirements for Admission to the Ontario College of 

Education 587 

Programmes of the Ontario College of Education 588 

Courses Leading to Supplementary Teaching Certificates 589 

The University of Toronto Schools 590 
Interim Measures to StaflF the New Secondary Schools 

and Junior Colleges 591 
Other Recommendations Relating to the Programme for the 

Training of Teachers 592 
Proposed Programme for the Training of Prospective Teachers 

of Special Schools and Classes 594 
Proposed Programme for the Training of Prospective Teachers 

for Provincial Technical Institutes 595 
The Teacher- Training Programme in Relation to Courses in 

Universities 596 
Summer School Courses Offered by the Department of 

Education 598 
Appendix — Report on An Emergency Training Scheme for 

Teachers for the Public and Separate Schools of Ontario 600 

Conditions of Service of Teaching Personnel 611 

Agreements Between Teachers and Boards of School Trustees 611 

Duties of Teachers 616 

Security of Tenure 616 

Salaries of Educational Personnel 620 

Superannuation of Educational Personnel 631 

Organizations, Conventions, Group Meetings, and Publications 640 

The Teaching Profession Act, 1944 640 

Teachers' Organizations 642 

Conventions and Group Meetings of Teachers 643 

Professional Publications for Teachers 643 

Special Opportunities for Professional Advancement 644 

The Teacher as a Citizen 646 

Community Programmes of Adult Education and Recreation 647 

Development and Organization 647 
Recommended Provisions for Community Programmes of 

Adult Education and Recreation 651 



XXV. School Site, Plant, and Equipment 655 

Brief History of School Buildings 655 

School Building Requirements 657 

Publications Relating to School Buildings 660 

Anticipated Need for School Buildings 660 

General and Specific Suggestions 661 

Temporary Buildings 661 

School Sites 661 

Auditoria 662 

Maintenance of School Buildings 662 

Use of School Accommodation for Community Purposes 662 

Possible Economies in School Construction 663 

XXVI. Other Educative Agencies 666 

Private Schools 666 

Residential and Day Schools 666 

Trade Schools 669 

(1) Business Colleges 670 

(2) Technical Schools 670 

(3) Correspondence Schools 671 
Day Nurseries 671 
Day Care Centres 673 
Language Schools 674 

The Education of the Indian Children of Ontario 675 

Art Gallery of Toronto 677 

Royal Ontario Museum 678 

Junior Red Cross 679 

Ontario Federation of Home and School Associations 679 

Imperial Order Daughters of the Empire 680 

XXVII. The Development of Methods of Financing Education in 

Ontario 682 

Financing Public Education in Ontario Today 682 

Development of the Bases of Local Financial Support of 
Publicly Supported Elementary and Secondary Education 

in Ontario 687 

Development of the Bases for Provincial Financial Assistance 
to Publicly Supported Elementary and Secondary Education 

in Ontario 698 

Basis for the Distribution of Legislative Grants as Introduced 

in 1945 705 

XXVIII. Our Proposed Method of Financing the Educational 

Programme 709 
Local Financial Support of Elementary and Post-elementary 

Education 709 

Present Methods of Financing 709 

Recommendations 712 

Local Sources of Revenue 713 

Equalization of Assessment 715 

Budgets and Development Plans 717 

Township and County Levies and Grants 718 

Audits of School Accounts and Transactions 718 


Provincial Financial Support of Elementary and Post- 
elementary Education '19 
Special Legislative Grants 719 
General Legislative Grants 719 

(a) Elementary Schools 720 

(b) Secondary Schools 721 
Distribution of General Legislative Grants Under the 

Reorganized Educational System 722 
Apportionment by the Legislature of Funds 

Appropriated by It for Educational Purposes 727 
Distribution of Legislative Grants to Elementary 

Schools 727 
Distribution of Legislative Grants to Post-elementary 

Schools 731 
Other Expenditures of the Department of Education Related 

to the Operation of Elementary and Post-elementary Schools 732 

Legislative Grants to Other Agencies 734 

Legislative Grants by Other Departments of Government 734 

Federal Aid to Education 736 


XXX. Conclusion 747 

Minority Report by Dr. R. J. Neelands and Dr. W. L. Whitelock 755 

Memorandum by Mr. A. V. Chapman 773 

Memorandum by Dr. Sidney E. Smith 775 


Minority Report by Mr. E. F. Henderson, Mr. Arthur Kelly, 

Mr. J. M. Pigott, and Mr. Henri Saint-Jacques 779 

Appendix: A History of the Roman Catholic Separate School Controversy 803 

Introduction 803 

I. The Pioneer Era 806 

II. Bishop Power and Catholic Education 818 

III. Ryerson and the New Plan 826 

IV. The Fiery Fifties 843 
V. The Confederation Agreement 862 

VI. Secondary Schools 874 

\'II. Principles Behind the Conflict 881 

Memorant)um by Mr. Henri Saint-Jacques 895 

Memorandum by Mr. W. H. Clarke 899 



A. Briefs Submitted to the Royal Commission ox Education 911 

B. Memoranda Submitted to the Royal Commission on Education 918 

C. \\ttnesses Appearing Before the Royal Commission on Education 920 





1. So wide is the panorama of education in Ontario that the individual 
may well stand amazed at its many aspects: the complexity of the adminis- 
trative machinery; the multiplicity of studies and activities; and the diversity 
of ideas regarding purpose and practice. The whole is difficult to compre- 
hend, and only the specialist knows the parts in detail. It is, however, the 
variety rather tlian the size of the provincial educational organization which 
is most impressive: public schools; separate schools; continuation schools; 
high schools; collegiate institutes; vocational schools; technical institutes; 
schools operated by the Department of Education for the deaf and the 
blind; schools for the training of educational personnel— all these and more 
are found in the great organization which has evolved over the years for 
the development of the province's greatest natural resource, its young 

2. It will be generallv agreed that such an organization should be sub- 
jected to periodic review in order that its efficiency and practices may be 
appraised and necessar)' improvements effected. Nations emerging from 
war have frequently made such reviews; indeed there is a direct relationship 
between warfare and educational development. In war, human effort is 
stretched to its utmost; emphasis is placed upon human and spiritual rather 
than upon materialistic values; and the national awareness of the virtues 
of loyalty, patriotism, co-operation, and sacrifice is renewed and in\dgorated. 
At such times, man naturally turns to the improvement of education, where- 
in lies his greatest hope for the realization of his ideals. 

3. At the outset of such a review, it must be recognized that the aims 
as well as the organization and administration of education have always 
been influenced by social, geographic, and economic conditions. It is neces- 
sary, therefore, to note some of the conditions which have deeplv influenced 
the development and even the purposes of our educational system. 

4. Ontario, the second largest province in the Dominion of Canada, has 
a total area of 412,582 square miles, including 49,300 square miles of lakes 

^Except where otherwise stated, statistics in this chapter are taken from A Conspectus 
of the Province of Ontario, 1947, pubhshed by authority of the Provincial Treasurer. 


and rivers, and a total population of approximately 4,000,000. Lying between 
the provinces of Quebec and Manitoba, it extends 1,000 miles from east to 
west and more than 1,000 miles northward from the Great Lakes to Hudson 
Bay. Some three and one-half times as large in area as the British Isles, it 
is approximately equal in size to the combined areas of Maine, New Hamp- 
shire, Vermont, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Connecticut, New York, New 
Jerse)', Pennsylvania, Ohio, Michigan, Indiana, Illinois, and Wisconsin. 

5. Although our province is actually made up of several geological 
formations, it is commonly divided into three sections— the St. Lawrence 
Lowlands, the Canadian Shield, and the Hudson Bay Coastal Plain. The 
St. Lawrence Lowlands include most of what is usually known as "Southern 
Ontario". This section is divided into two parts— Eastern and Western— by 
the Niagara Escarpment, a line of cliffs, 250-300 feet high, extending from 
Queenston Heights near Niagara Falls to the Bruce Peninsula. The fertile 
soil and favourable climate of Southern Ontario support well developed 
farming communities and thriving commercial and industrial centres. The 
Great Lakes and the St. Lawrence River, containing the greatest volume of 
fresh water in the world, form an inland waterway shared by Canada and 
the United States, which carries much of the commerce of the central part 
of the continent and gives access to the Atlantic Ocean. More than two- 
thirds of Ontario's urban population is located along its shores. 

6. The Canadian Shield includes more than two-thirds of the province. 
It covers practically all of Northern Ontario except the Hudson Bay Coastal 
Plain, and a portion of the south-eastern part of the province. Its heavily 
glaciated surface is generally rugged, composed of a succession of rounded 
hills. It has countless rivers and lakes of irregular shape and varying size. 
Most of it is ill suited for agriculture, though there are some areas suitable 
for this purpose— particularly the famous Clay Belt which gives great prom- 
ise for agricultural development. Tlie latter area is served in part by the 
Ontario Northland Railway and attracts an increasing number of settlers 
each year. The Sliield is an almost incredibly rich storehouse of mineral 
and forest wealth, an important source of water-power, and a popular vaca- 
tion-land. It is sparsely settled despite the existence of centres of mining, 
lumbering, pulp and paper manufacture, transportation, and power develop- 
ment. Much of the Canadian Shield— and most of the Hudson Bay Coastal 
Plain, an area of more than 80,000 square miles— remains unsurveyed. 

7. Ontario's climate is healthy and invigorating. Much of the province 
enjoys approximately 2,000 hours of sunshine a year and some of it more. 
Temperatures are generally moderated by the Great Lakes and Hudson Bay, 
although in some areas they run to extremes. The average annual rainfall 
for the past 64 years has been more than 24 inches, and the average annual 
snowfall has exceeded 6 feet. 

8. Because of her rich natural endowment, Ontario has a per capita pro- 
duction more than 20 per cent higher than that for Canada as a whole. 
Many industries have been developed in the province; in 1945 the net value 


of the products of manufacturing was nearly four times that of agriculture, 
seven times that of forestry, and nine times that of mining. The growth of 
special servdces such as merchandising, construction, finance, transportation, 
and communication— a gro\^1:h which accompanies expanding industry and 
a growing population— places Ontario in a very strong economic position. 
9. Ontario is well served by the two great transcontinental railway sys- 
tems, the Canadian National and the Canadian Pacific. The Ontario North- 
land Railway, owned and operated by the Provincial Government, serves 
the area from North Bay to Moosonee. The Great Lakes and the St. Law- 
rence River permit shipping to move from the Head of the Lakes to the 
Atiantic Ocean. The network of the King's Highways spreads over Ontario. 
Air travel is rapidly increasing throughout the province. 

10. For purposes of municipal organization, the province is divided into 
12 territorial districts in the north and into 43 counties in the south. The 
districts include 85 per cent of the total area, but the counties contain more 
than 85 per cent of the total population. As recorded in the 1941 census, the 
population is predominantly British; 72 per cent trace their origin to the 
British Isles. The next largest group, containing nearly 10 per cent of the 
population, is French and is concentrated mainly in the Ottawa Valley, in 
Essex and Kent Counties, and in Northern Ontario. Other groups are Ger- 
man, Netherlands, Jewish, Italian, Polish, Ukrainian, North American 
Indian, Scandinavian, and Finnish. These groups range in size from 4.4 
per cent to .7 per cent of the total population. Over 30,000 North American 
Indians and Eskimos live in the province. However, more than 90 per cent 
of the people of Ontario speak English; 7.5 per cent speak both English and 
French; less than 2 per cent speak French only; and about one-half of one 
per cent speak neither English nor French. Of the many religious denom- 
inations, 6 have more than 100,000 members. These, in order of size, are: 
the United Church, Roman Catholic, Anglican, Presbyterian, Baptist, and 
Lutheran. More than two-thirds of the total is contained in the first three 

11. A special study of the population trend in Ontario made by the 
Ontario Department of Health in August, 1944, indicated that the popula- 
tion of Ontario should increase, assuming a normal rate of immigration, 
by 400,000 within 17 years. This estimate will undoubtedly be exceeded; 
conditions are now favourable for selective immigration, and many immi- 
grants have settled in Ontario since the close of the Second World War. 
More striking than the increase in population, however, is the growth of 
cities, towns, and suburban areas. Fifty years ago the ratio of urban to rm^al 
population was two to three; today it is reversed. This urbanization is closely 
associated with the great industrial development of the province during the 
same period of time. 

12. It is natural that such a large province, with great variety in climate, 
natural resources, and type of population, should present many educational 
problems. Climatic conditions affect the type of school building, the trans- 


portation of pupils, and school holidays. The varying density of population 
makes it almost impossible to provide a uniform system of education, though 
this is being more and more nearly achieved. The rapid gro\vth in popula- 
tion, in particular that caused by immigration, has created many problems. 
Educational facilities must be provided not only for a greatly increased 
school population, but also for many thousands of persons who do not know 
our language and culture. Our freedom of religious worship gives rise to 
special considerations relating to instruction in religious knowledge. Under- 
lying aU our educational problems is the question of financial resources. 
In this respect, the people of Ontario are especially fortunate in that they 
are able to support a relatively high standard of educational service.^ The 
manner in which the authorities have attempted to solve these problems is 
indicated in the following brief survey of the organization of publicly sup- 
ported education^ in Ontario today. 

13. In this organization, elementary schools are known as either public 
or separate, and secondary schools include collegiate institutes, high schools, 
continuation schools, and vocational schools. In terms of vears, the orcran- 
ization is commonly described as an 8-5 plan. The elementary schools 
normally offer a programme given in eight grades, exclusive of the kinder- 
garten; the secondary schools give courses from grades IX to XIII. In the 
former the age of pupils is generally from 6 to 14, and in the latter, from 14 to 
19 years. Some elementary schools offer courses in grades IX and X, sometimes 
referred to as fifth classes; a good number of them have a kindergarten. 
Some secondary schools give courses only to the end of grade XII; among 
these are the majority of the continuation schools, several vocational schools, 
and very small high schools employing only two teachers. 

14. In the elementary schools, the subjects of study for grades I to VI 
are as follows: English, arithmetic, social studies, health and physical train- 
ing, natural science, music, and art. In grades VII and VIII, crafts, agri- 
culture, and industrial arts and crafts or home economics may be added at 
the discretion of the local school board. 

15. A number of children who live in sparsely settled parts of Northern 
Ontario are beyond the reach of the regular school system. To meet their 
needs, correspondence courses, including special courses for children whose 
mother tongue is French, have been arranged by the Department of Edu- 
cation. These courses are available also to children who cannot attend 
school on account of illness or physical disability, to children of missionaries 

'K. F. Argue, Wealth, Children and Education in Canada. Report on the Financing 
of Education in Canada, prepared at the request of the Alberta Teachers' Association 
for presentation at the National Convention of the Canadian Teachers' Federation, Van- 
c-ouver, B.C.. August 13-17, 1945, pp. 12-13. 

"By the phrase "pubhcly supported education" we mean education in public, separate, 
continuation, high, and vocational schools, collegiate institutes, school for the blind, 
school for the deaf, normal schools, and other schools and classes below the universit>- 
level conducted in accordance with the provisions of the various school Acts and in 
receipt of legislative grants made under The Dejmrtrncnt of Education Act. 


and others who are temporarily outside Canada, to children in sanatoria 
and preventoria where there is no resident teacher, and to prisoners in 
penitentiaries and reform schools in Ontario. In addition, on the recom- 
mendation of the local elementary school inspector or high school principal, 
an)- pupil attending school may be enrolled for correspondence courses 
in any subject, academic or vocational, not provided in the local school. 
0\er a period of 22 years, the annual enrolment of pupils in tliese courses 
has increased from 200 to 1,600. Lessons are supplied in academic subjects 
for all grades from I to XII and in vocational subjects in grade IX. The 
courses are given free of charge and textbooks are provided up to and in- 
cluding grade VII. Special courses for adults in some elementary school 
subjects are also available. 

16. In a similar way, Ontario's unique "School on Wheels" has been 
developed to meet the needs of children living in isolated areas but within 
reach of a railway. The "school" is a specially equipped railway car con- 
taining a classroom and living quarters for the teacher. Seven such cars, 
operating over a total distance of more than 1,000 miles, offer educational 
opportunities to more than 200 boys and gu'ls. The railways provide the 
cars, the transportation, and part of the cost of building spur lines; the 
Department of Education pays for the renovation of the cars and for the 
instruction, and pays a percentage of the railway's investment in the under- 

17. The provision for the education of handicapped children in auxiliary 
classes and in the provincial school for the blind and the provincial school 
for the deaf is described in a subsequent chapter. 

18. The courses in secondary schools are diversified to meet the needs 
of the adolescent pupil. In collegiate institutes, high schools, and con- 
tinuation schools, the General Course is offered. For grade IX it includes 
the following subjects : ^ English, social studies, physical education, guidance 
(occupations), mathematics, general science or agricultural science, French, 
either art or music or art and music, shop work or home economics, agri- 
culture, and either t}^pewriting or business practice or t^'pewriting and 
business practice. The first five subjects are obligatory and the remainder 
are listed as options. For a complete year's work any three of the options 
are taken in addition to the five obligatory subjects. An additional option 
may be taken by a pupil at the discretion of the board of trustees.- In 
schools which have a department organized for the purpose, there is prac- 
tical work in agriculture. In grades X, XI, XII, and XIII some subjects are 
obligatory. In grade X these are English, social studies (histor\^ and 
geography), and physical education. In grades XI and XII, history replaces 
social studies; and in grade XIII, English and physical education are the 
only obligator)' subjects. In manv of the smaller schools, because of the 

'See Circular H. S. 1, 1950. 

-Department of Education, Memorandum. Ma\ , 1950. 


limited number of subjects taught, the individual stiident has no choice in 
the selection of subjects qualifying for the graduation diploma. 

19. In vocational schools the following courses may be offered: indus- 
trial, agricultural, home economics, commercial, and art. These are normally 
four-year courses, providing a general education combined with specialized 
training in some particular field of work. Technical institutes have recently 
been established at Haileybury, Hamilton, Toronto, and Port Arthur-Fort 
William. The institute at Toronto is poly technical; the one at Haileybur^• 
specializes in mining; the one at Hamilton concentrates on textiles; and the 
institute at Port Arthur-Fort William offers technical courses in mining and 
forestry as well as the first-year university courses in general arts, applied 
science, and professional forestry. 

20. The following certificates and diplomas in elementary and secondary 
education are awarded by the Department of Education:^ 

(1) The Intermediate Certificate— to students who have successfully com- 
pleted the prescribed courses for grades VII, VIII, and IX and one of 
the prescribed courses for grade X. 

(2) The Secondary School Graduation Diploma— to students who have 
successfully completed one of the courses prescribed for grades XI and 

XII or such modifications of these courses as the Minister may approve 
at the beginning of the school year. 

(3) The Secondary School Homnir Graduation Diploma— to students who 
have completed a course of study prescribed for grade XIII and hold 
standing in English composition and English literature and in six grade 

XIII papers chosen from the optional subjects. 

The Intermediate Certificate, for which there are no departmental examina- 
tions, is awarded on the recommendation of the principal of a secondary' or 
elementary school, but the recommendation of an elementary school prin- 
cipal is subject to the approval of his inspector. The Secondary School 
Graduation Diploma and the Secondary School Honour Graduation Diploma 
are awarded on the recommendation of a principal of a secondary school, 
but, for the latter diploma, credits in grade XIII subjects are prescribed, 
which can be obtained only by passing the upper school examinations s(^t 
and marked under the super\'ision of the Department of Education. 

21. The pronounced trend toward universal education at the secondary' 
school level has made necessary a curriculum designed not exclusively for 
university entrance, but to meet a great variety of needs. Among the changes 
which have resulted are an increase in the number of optional subjects, a 
reduction in the number of external examinations, an increased emphasis 
on extra-curricular activities, and the provision of special direction and 
supervision for music, art and crafts, health activities, guidance, and audio- 
visual aids. The need to make adequate provision for bright children, for 
backward children, and for other atypical children has been recognized, 

'See Circular U.S. ], 1950. 


but action has been delayed by the difficulty of providing for individual 
diflFerences. And, despite an extensive building programme, a deficiency of 
accommodation exists. This has been aggravated by the postponement of 
construction during the years of depression and the Second World War. 

22. Our educational system has evolved slowly over the years; it has 
conformed to changing conceptions of education and has been adapted to 
meet special local conditions as society developed and new needs arose. 
Manv of the problems associated with the system today have their origin in 
historv and hence cannot be understood or resolved without a knowledge 
of the past. 

23. Only a brief summary of the developments of the past 150 years 
need be given at this point. They fall convenientiy into four periods: the 
Pioneer Period, 1800-1840; the Period of Expansion, 1840-1870; the Period 
of Consohdation, 1870-1900; and the Twentieth Century. 

The Pioneer Period, 1800-1840 

24. At the opening of the nineteenth century, the population of Upper 
Canada was 70,000. Nearly all the settlers lived in scattered clearings hewn 
from the forest. By 1841 the number of inhabitants had increased to more 
tlian 450,000. Life was rigorous; communication and travel were difficult; 
money and manufactured goods were scarce; and almost everything had 
to be grown or made on the farm. There were few books and newspapers; 
and there was little leisure or opportunits' for intellectual or aesthetic pur- 
suits of anv kind. 

25. The schools were generally regarded as existing primarily for those 
who might be expected to enter the professions or take positions in the 
government. This is not surprising, since at this time no countr)' in the 
world had a scheme of general schools arising from a belief in universal 
education. Land grants for grammar schools and a university had been set 
aside in 1797, but these had had little effect. The District Public School 
Act of 1807,^ which provided grants of £100 a year each to the masters of 
eight public (grammar) schools, was more successful. In addition to the 
institutions which resulted from these efforts, some private schools and a 
few academies founded as voluntar)' undertakings by religious bodies or 
by townspeople came into existence. By 1839 there were about 40 or 50 
schools which might be described as secondary on the grounds that thev 
offered advanced instruction. Of these, 13 were public (grammar) schools, 
and perhaps a quarter of the remainder might qualify as academies. At- 
tempts were also made to establish institutions of higher education. Through 
the efforts of John Strachan, a charter for an Anglican university was secured 
in 1827; but there was opposition to its religious exclusiveness, and it was 
found possible to set up only a superior grammar school— Upper Canada 

^An Act to Estahlisli Ptihlic Sr/ico/.s in each and ccert) Dixtrict of this fror/nre. 47 
Geo. Ill, Ch. 6, S.U.C. 


College— which offered some instruction at the higher level and served as 
a temporary university from 1830 until 1843, when King's College was finally 
opened in Toronto. Meanwhile, the Methodists, led by Egerton Ryerson, 
opened Upper Canada Academy in 1837; this became Victoria College in 

26. Elementary schools were established more slowly. The representa- 
tives in the Legislative Assemblv who were vigorous in denouncing pro- 
vincial expenditure on grammar schools for the few were less vigorous in 
advocating education for the many. In 1816, however, an Act^ was passed 
to provide for the operation of elementary schools. It set aside £6,000— 
largely for the payment of teachers' salaries— to supplement the rate-bills 
and other contributions collected from parents. Each school was to have 
three elected trustees. Shortly afterwards attempts were made to establish 
monitorial schools of the type operated in England by the National Societ)^^ 
and to bring all education under the direction of the central authority. The 
success of these efforts, however, was limited and short-lived. The General 
Board of Education, appointed by the Legislature in 1823, exerted some 
influence through the free distribution of Mavor's Speller; but in a countrv 
where the population was scattered and transportation slow there was little 
hope of securing conformity to regulations and no excuse whatever for 
monitorial schools, designed as they were for hundreds of pupils in a class- 
room. It is not surprising, therefore, that the General Beard was disbanded 
in 1833, and that in the same year grants to elementary schools under local 
control were substantially increased. 

27. In 1830, when the population of Upper Canada was about 200,000, 
there were approximately 400 elementary schools, enrolling a total of some 
10,000 pupils. The typical elementary school at this time was a structure 
of logs, about 18 feet by 20, equipped only with rough benches, a slanting 
board along the wall for writing, a lectern-type desk for the teacher, a fire- 
place, a pail and dipper for drinking water, and a supply of birch rods. 
The teacher had his textbooks— a spelling book which might, like Mavor's, 
serve every purpose, probablv also a speller and a reader of more advanced 
type, an arithmetic, possibly a grammar and a geography, and certainlv a 
Bible. The pupil brought such textbooks as were available, a slate, and such 
paper as could be found. Ink, pens, and rulers were usually home-made. 

28. As a rule, the common school was in operation for six months during 
the winter. The teacher was often an old soldier or a newcomer without 
capital, ill qualified for more lucrative pursuits, who was willing to accept 
free board, a small government grant, and the prospect of collecting a 

^An Act Granting to His Majesty a sum of money to be applied to the use of Com- 
mon Schools throughout this Province, and to provide for the Regulations of said Com- 
mon Schools, 56 Geo. Ill, Ch. 36, S.U.C. 

-The National Society for Promotion of the Education of the Poor in the Principles 
of the Established Church throughout England and Wales. 


small additional amount from rate-bills on parents for his half-year's hire. 
The common-school teacher of 1830 had, liimself, only a common school 
education and no professional training; his essential qualification was 
ability to suppress disorder while the pupils committed to memory the 
lessons of the textbook and recited them for him. The pupils, usually 12 to 
25 in number, attended on a voluntary basis. They were for the most part 
6 to 10 years of age; but young men and women of 18 or 20 sometimes 
returned to school for the v^'inter in cases where a competent teacher had 
been engaged. In some places a school for girls and young children who 
could be spared from the work at home might be conducted by a woman. 
Only too frequently, some schools remained closed for a full year or more 
because no teachers could be found. 

29. From the scant)' evidence available, it appears likely that nearly all 
children remained at school long enough to learn to read in a halting, 
mechanical fashion and to spell orally a considerable number of words. This 
required a laborious pilgrimage of from 9 to 15 months in the spelling book. 
The pupils progressed from the alphabet to words of two and three syl- 
lables; and they had parallel lessons in reading. The latter began with 
sentences composed of two-letter words, such as SO HE IS UP, and arrived 
as quickly as possible at sententious narratives, strongly moral and religious 
in tone. After about 15 months of spelling and reading, approximately four- 
fifths of the pupils remained to learn writing and arithmetic and to read 
and spell from more difficult books. About nine months appears to have 
been the average time required for this. Only a small minority of pupOs 
remained longer; these studied grammar and geography where the teacher 
was qualified to instruct in these subjects. The usual common school edu- 
cation, therefore, consisted mainly of the study of spelling, reading, writing, 
and arithmetic during four six-month periods of voluntary attendance. There 
was also rehgious and moral instruction, which consisted of memorizing 
New Testament verses and reading the Bible. Meagre as such an education 
was, it at least equalled, if indeed it did not surpass, that generally received 
by children in England and other countries at this time. 

30. The selection and arrangement of the content of the courses of study 
in this old-time schooling, while perfectly logical from an adult point of 
view, were uninteresting and probably almost unintelligible to the child. 
Partly as a consequence, discipline was harsh. The range of the content was 
narrow, but it should be remembered that the aims of education were 
limited. Most parents thought that children derived litde advantage from 
more than the minimum of "book learning" required for the simple business 
of contemporary life. Leaders in church and state emphasized the need for 
obedience and conformity. It was not fashionable to encourage initiative in 
the child. The pupil in school was expected to memorize and not to question. 
The sort of thing he memorized is illustrated by the definition which he 


learned by heart as an introduction to a new process in arithmetic: "Mul- 
tipHcation teaches of two numbers given to find a third which shall contain 
either of the 2;iven numbers as often as the other contains a unit." 

31. The 11 grammar schools in operation during the year 1829 had a 
total of only 280 pupils enrolled. Of these, 61 were learning to read and 
write, 112 were studying grammar and mathematics, and 108 had reached 
the secondary level and begun the study of Latin. Although the grammar 
schools were intended only for boys, girls were sometimes admitted if their 
parents refused on social grounds to send them to common school. Obvi- 
ously, therefore, a grammar school did not cater only to advanced students. 
The grammar school master— usually a clergyman of the Church of Eng- 
land—was competent to impart a knowledge of Latin and mathematics, and 
occasionally of Greek, by the traditional methods which he had acquired at 
grammar school and univ^ersity. Since a pupil in tlie classics paid substantial 
fees and often paid also for fuel, repairs, and board, the total income of 
the master, including tlie government grant of £100 and his stipend as 
minister, was such that he could live with the dignity befitting his position. 
School was conducted in the master's house, in rented premises, or in a 
school-house. The pupils ranged in age from 5 to 17 years, and the school 
year was usually ten months or more in length. Teaching procedure was 
generally by way of the routine individual assignment and recitation. The 
curriculum included English grammar, Latin, mathematics, religious knowl- 
edge, and some history and geography. Since each school was virtually a 
law unto itself, an exceptional master like the brilliandy gifted Strachan 
might enrich the content and enliven the nature of the instruction he gave; 
but the average teacher kept to the narrow grind. 

32. The progress of education was impeded during the period by jeal- 
ousy and distrust between opposing political factions. The grammar schools 
were attacked by those who objected to a disproportionate expenditure of 
public money on education designed for relatively few children. The com- 
mon schools were disliked by others on the grounds that they were follow- 
ing the pattern of the American district school; and their teaching was 
distrusted if it happened to be done by American teachers or through the 
medium of American textbooks. Some supporters of the Family Compact, 
opposed to the growing spirit of "insubordination and equality" among the 
people, favoured a differentiated education for the few. The political struggle 
of the time had its repercussions on the development of education; indeed, 
it occasionally brought both grammar schools and common schools to a 
rather sorry plight. 

The Period of Expansion, 1840-1^0 

33. Between the census years 1841 and 1871 the population of Ontario 
grew from 456,000 to over 1,620,000. There was a rapid rise in the first 
decade, owing to a flood of immigration, and afterwards a steady increase. 


Urban centres increased in size and in number. Whereas in 1831 there were 
onlv five centres with 1,000 or more inhabitants, in 1871 there were 12 
with over 5,000 and 26 with over 2,000. Transportation and commimication 
were greatly improved in the 1850's through the building of railways and 
the introduction of cheap, prepaid postage and the telegraph. Wealth, com- 
forts, and books increased, and reading became more popular. The new 
influx of immigrants coincided with the extension of pohtical responsibilities; 
in the lS40's democratic control over politics was established, locally by 
the Municipal Acts, and provincially through the attainment of responsible 
government. The influx coincided also with a rapid expansion of educational 
facilities and a marked improvement in educational practice and ideas. 

34. The man of the hour was Egerton Ryerson. It was he who, as Super- 
intendent of Education^ from 1844 to 1875, fashioned and constructed the 
Ontario school system. He set up a strong central authority to prepare regu- 
lations, to draw up a course of study for the whole province, to enforce 
the use of a single set of authorized textbooks, and to control the qualifica- 
tions of teachers. At the same time, he left to the local boards definite 
responsibihties, including the engagement of teachers and the maintenance 
of the school. By 1850 he had not only achieved all this in spite of opposi- 
tion, but had also introduced normal school training and some degree of 
supervision over schools by county boards and local superintendents. Dur- 
ing the 20 years that followed, he persuaded 4,000 out of 4,400 school boards 
to finance education entirely from local taxes and thus provide free schools. 
This and other improvements he brought about by persistent missionar)' 
zeal, through public statements and addresses, and through his annual 
reports in the Journal of Education. 

35. A few statistics will indicate the extent of the educational expansion 
during this period. Between 1845 and 1871, enrolment in common schools 
increased at a rate approximately twice that of the population— from about 
96,000 to 446,000. The school year, which was less than eight months long 
in 1844, had been extended to over eleven months by 1871. At the latter 
date the ordinary period of schooling was probably about five years, or 
nearly twice as long, in months, as that for the pioneer child. The total 
amount spent on salaries of teachers and maintenance of schools was over 
four times as great in 1870 as in 1850. At the beginning of the period there 
were no common school libraries; in 1870 there were 1,146, with a total of 
240,000 volumes. 

36. As might be expected, the typical common school of 1860 was an 
ungraded rural school, although graded schools existed in cities and towns. 
The school-house was of frame construction and had a blackboard, maps, 
and desks instead of benches for the pupils. The teacher was still a man 
who had neither normal school training nor grammar school education. The 
curriculum included two new subjects which were thought to be valuable 

*His exact title varied, but the variations are of minor significance. 


for citizens of a democracy— grammar for clear tliought and accurate speech, 
and geography for a knowledge of the world. The most striking innovation, 
however, was the new method of class teaching— by oral question and 
answer. This, of course, was the result of Pestalozzian influence. Ryerson 
spread it by way of the Journal of Education and the normal schools. Grad- 
uates of these schools taught the gospel in county teachers' associations. 
The new method was made possible largely by the adoption of uniform 
textbooks for all pupHs in the schools. 

37. But, while education in the elementary schools was developing 
rapidly, it was in the secondary schools that a fundamental change occurred. 
This did not happen until Ryerson had been in office for some time. Al- 
though an Act had been passed in 1839^ to increase the number of grammar 
schools, Ryerson paid httle attention to such schools until he was able to 
bring them under the central authority. In 1853 an Act- was passed which 
made two fundamental changes: firstly, it required the county councils to 
appoint the trustee boards, thus instituting an indirect type of local con- 
trol; secondly, it encouraged the establishment in smaller centres of the 
so-called union schools, which consisted of grammer schools linked to 
common schools. The aim of this second change was to make secondary 
education available to more young people. At the same time Ryerson 
introduced the grammer school entrance examination to keep elementary 
school pupils out of the grammar schools and to make the latter a true 
secondaiy stage of education between common school and university. 
Unfortunately, however, when the grammar schools were thus made a 
part of the common educational system, it was not possible to go far in 
introducing a suitable curriculum. Science, for example, was included; but 
there were few teachers qualified to give instruction in it. Thus the new 
pupils of the grammar schools, however little taste or use they might have 
for what they acquired, were obliged to follow the traditional academic 
curriculum. On the other hand, the quality of secondary education suffered 
by the pretence that such an education could be given in small union 
schools without adequate staff or facilities. 

38. In 1860 there were 86 grammar schools with enrolments ranging 
from 25 to 150 and a total enrolment of 4,400 pupils. Although they varied 
greatly, we may select a school of 50 pupils as reasonably typical of this 
time. It would be housed in a freehold brick building equipped with black- 
boards, maps, and globes, but without a library, scientific apparatus, or 
other modern facilities. Pupils paid about $18 a year in fees and usually 
remained in school for two years or a little more, frequentiy for the pur- 
pose of qualifying for an elementary school teaching certificate. As for the 

^An Act to Provide for the Advancement of Education in this Province, 2 Vict., Ch. 
10, Sec. 8, S.U.C. 

-An Act to Amend the Law Relating to Grammar Schools in Upper Canada, 16 Vict., 
Ch. 186, Sec. 10 and II (4), S.P.C. 


teachers, the headmaster of the typical school was probably a university 
graduate, and his assistant, it any, was most likely certificated as having 
lower, but acceptable, academic attainments. Their salaries might be $700 
and $400 a year, respectively. These salaries were low enough, but were 
better than the)' appear to be since skilled and unskilled labourers at that 
time received about the same wage per day as they receive now per hour. 

39. Of the 50 pupils attending our typical grammar school in 1860, 
nearly all were studying English, mathematics, and geography; a majority 
were studying British, ancient, or Canadian history, usually the first; about 
half received instruction in Latin, about one-quarter in French, and about 
one-seventh in Greek. About half the pupils were also recorded in the 
register as students of science; but this meant little more than that they 
were studying the selections on science in the authorized reader. On his 
visit to the school, the grammar school inspector would find the teaching 
of most subjects to be superficial; it would not stimulate thought and 
understanding; it would require chiefly a memorization of definitions and 
facts. Only one pupil in thirty who entered a grammar school passed the 
easy matriculation examinations, although there were now a number of 
universities, including Victoria College, founded in 1841, Queen's Col- 
lege, 1842, the University of Toronto (formerly King's College), 1849, 
and Trinity University, 1852. 

The Period of Consolidation, 1870-1900 

40. These were years of broadening outlook. Ontario was now a mem- 
ber of a growing federation, linked to other provinces by three-cent postage 
in 1868, by the Intercolonial Railway in 1876, and by the Canadian Pacific 
Railway in 1887. The new contacts extended beyond the Canadian borders; 
the International Bridge at Niagara was opened in 1873; in the nineties 
there was a large exportable surplus of Canadian wheat; in the last year of 
the century a Canadian contingent went to the Boer War. At the same 
time new horizons were opening up for a good many individual citizens; 
during these same years the prejudice against reading as a pastime almost 
entirely disappeared. Whereas in pioneer days little was read except the 
Bible and an occasional newspaper, and in the mid-century only purpose- 
ful reading of factual books was regarded as reasonably respectable, in the 
period following Confederation fiction and poetry were widely read. 

41. These broader horizons were reflected in education. The school 
readers were replaced by texts containing more imaginative prose and 
poetry of literary merit. Literature and music were added to the elementary 
school curriculum. In the secondary schools more time was spent on litera- 
ture, modem languages, and science; and there was a widening choice of 
optional subjects. In 1871 the common schools, with the exception of sepa- 
rate schools, were designated "Public Schools" and made free and open to 


all.^ In the same year the grammar schools became high schools. In these, 
pupils were charged moderate fees or none at all. Enrolment increased 
nearly 300 per cent during the period, while the general population in- 
creased only 50 per cent. The office of Chief Superintendent of Education 
was discontinued in 1875;- instead, the direction of publicly supported 
education was placed under a Minister of Education responsible through 
the Government and Legislature to the people. 

42. During the same period there were increased efforts to secure 
efficiency in instruction in the classroom. Some of these were, unfortu- 
nately, governed almost entirely by considerations of cost and were short- 
sighted and niggardly. In 1871, for example, an attempt was made to raise 
standards in high schools by using examination results as a basis for distri- 
buting legislative grants. The direct consequence, of course, was an in- 
crease of pressure and "cram" in these schools. Teachers' journals were 
filled with examination questions and answers; English literature books 
were published with two pages of notes for every page of text; pedagogical 
skill tended to consist only in drilling into the student whatever could 
be made use of in a test. The scheme was discontinued in 1882, but it was 
probably influential in raising the written examination to a position of 
dominance which it was to retain long after 1882. 

43. Another illustration of the same attitude may be found in the 
means adopted to provide training for all teachers. In 1875 less than 25 per 
cent of the elementar)' school teachers in service had received professional 
training. Accordingly, a second training centre, the Ottawa Normal School, 
was established. This improved the situation, but not sufficiently; and in 
1877 the Government devised a plan to staff the the elementary schools with 
teachers who had a minimum of training, at very little cost to the central 
authority and the employing boards. According to this plan, a non-profes- 
sional Third Class Certificate was offered on the basis of an examination 
which could be passed after a year of cramming at high school; in addi- 
tion, a professional certificate was awarded after 13 weeks' attendance 
at a county model school. This was a selected elementary school at which 
the teacher in training secured instruction, advice, and practice under the 
guidance of the master in charge. Teachers who remained in the profession 
were required to improve their academic and professional qualifications at 
high school and normal school, but the effect of this easy entrance into 
teaching was that more than half the schools of the province became staffed 
with transients. Teaching tended to become a mere avenue to other occupa- 
tions. After 1872 the number of women teachers began to exceed the number 
of men. Moreover, the county-model-school plan resulted in too great a 

^An Act to Improve the Common and Grammar Schools of Ontario, 34 Vict., Ch. 33, 
Sec. 1, S.O., 1870-71. 

'^An Act Respecting the Education Department of Ontario, 39 Vict., Ch. 16, S.O., 


supply of teachers; and, as a consequence, salaries declined and even en- 
lightened boards in prosperous communities were tempted to offer the 
lowest prevailing rates. 

44. In spite of changes, good or bad, that occurred in education in 
the name of progress or economy, the school system developed in the 
mould which had been designed by Egerton Ryerson. For example, there 
had been various divisions of elementar)^ schools into classes and grades 
in the 25 years before 1S70, but in the following decade tlie four-book, or 
eight-grade, scheme became the accepted pattern. Similarly, there were 
t\vo distinct courses in the high schools when the period began; subse- 
quently, an increasing number of subjects were made optional for different 
graduation examinations. But in the nineties a unified high school pro- 
gramme was designed to lead to a unified set of examinations, and 
"matriculation" became the gold standard of educational currency. One 
may look back to the last 30 years of the nineteenth century and find many 
other archet)'pes of the educational machinery of today. There is, indeed, 
from an educational point of view, good reason for regarding "the period 
of consolidation" as falUng within these years. 

45. In 1890 the population of Ontario was roughly 2,114,000. There 
were 5,700 pubUc schools and more than 8,000 teachers. Almost half a 
million pupils were enrolled, of whom about a quarter of a million were in 
attendance on an average day. There were also about 260 Roman Catholic 
separate schools with 35,000 pupils on the roll. Graded elementary schools 
were operating in towns and cities, and kindergartens were established in 
some city schools. The one-room rural school, of brick or frame construction, 
was, however, the most common type. In most places the elementary school 
was open for the full school year of 208 days. About seven-eighths of the 
pupils progressed as far as the fourth reader (grades VII and VIII). Two- 
thirds of the teachers were women. 

46. During any one day in an average public elementary school of 
1890, all the pupils studied the three R's; nearly all engaged in drawing; 
two-thirds were taught geography, grammar, and composition; about a third 
learned some Canadian history, drill and calisthenics, music, and hygiene; 
and about one-quarter spent some time on English history. These ratios 
varied in different schools. They were affected by the number of grades 
in which a subject was taught and by the fact that rural schools did not 
offer all subjects. They do not reflect the proportionate time allotted to 
any subject, but they do give some indication of content and emphasis in 
the elementary school programme. About a fifth of the pupils in the fourth- 
book classes remained for a year or so to study commercial work and 
mathematics— and sometimes science— in the fifth book. 

47. By way of the entrance examination a highly selected group of 
pupils entered the high schools and coUegiate institutes. In 1890-91, only 
22,000 of 85,000 pupils in the fourth book wrote either the December or 


July entrance examination, and only 12,000 passed. Moreover, of the 
19,400 enrolled in the secondary schools, nearly 15,000 were in the first 
form and about 3,600 in the second. There were only 772 in the third and 
85 in the fourth form, and about 500 might be expected to matriculate, most 
of them with junior matriculation from the third form. Those who received 
commercial certificates were more than four times as numerous as those 
who matriculated; and more than one student in four left high school to 
become a teacher. 

48. The 31 collegiate institutes were substantial institutions, invari- 
ably equipped with libraries and scientific apparatus. They had an average 
enrolment of 300 pupils and employed some specialist teachers. The 89 
high schools were about one-third as large. They varied in staff and 
facilities. The original distinction between a high school and a collegiate 
institute had been based on the fact that the latter institution had to have 
at least 60 boys studying Latin, but in the 1880's examination results were 
made the basis for distino-uishin^ between the t\vo institutions. It seems 
permissible to describe a typical secondary school as an institution com- 
bining the features of a collegiate institute and a high school and to discuss 
its curricular programme. 

49. The t>^ical secondary school of 1891 offered about 24 of the 28 
studies listed in the departmental returns, though some studies were merely 
divisions of subjects. Practically all pupils studied EngUsh grammar, 
composition, and literature; history'; geography; arithmetic; and algebra. 
Two-thirds or more studied reading, spelling, writing, drawing, geometry, 
and bookkeeping (which included "commercial transactions"). Between 40 
and 50 per cent had lessons in French, precis \\Titing, and indexing and had 
calisthenics or drill. Between 25 and 40 per cent studied Latin, physics, 
and botany and practised gymnastics. The percentages of students who 
took chemistry, German, Greek, and trigonometry were 18, 12, 6, and 4, 
respectively. Vocal music, temperance and hygiene, shorthand, and zoology 
were taught in a few schools. It must be remembered, of course, that sub- 
jects studied bv more than 25 per cent of the pupils must have been begun 
in the first form, in which most of the pupils were enrolled. Of 160 pupils in 
the typical school, only three would matriculate at the junior level and 
only one at the senior. 

The Twentieth Century 

50. In comparison with any previous period, the twentieth century 
has been marked by large-scale organization in private business and in 
governmental affairs. Ontario, as the chief industrial province of the coun- 
try, has perhaps been most affected by the results of mechanization and 
industrial organization. The developments in industry have inevitably been 
reflected in changes in the field of education. 

51. During the first 40 years of the century, elementary schools 
showed only a moderate gain in enrolment in proportion to total popula- 


tioii, but in reality the expansion was greater tlian it seems. In 1901, when 
the total population of Ontario was 2,182,947, the number of young people 
between the ages of 5 and 24 was 904,538; in 1941 the corresponding figures 
were 3,787,655 and 1,289,424. Thus tlie potential school population increased 
in die ratio of three to four; but during the same period, although the 
enrolment in elementary schools increased only from 459,000 to 534,000, 
average attendance increased from 262,000 to 478,000. The ratio in this 
latter case is tliat of five to nine. 

52. At the same time that this increase occurred, the elementary 
school programme was broadened. In 1904, nature study, art, manual 
training, and household science were added to the curriculum, although 
the latter two subjects were provided in only a few schools. Even more 
important was the introduction of new programmes of study in 1937 and 
1938. ^\lthough in these the better features of earlier courses were retained, 
the revision was one of the most revolutionary that has taken place in 
our educational system. In comparison with the old curriculum, the new 
one was suggestive rather than prescriptive and flexible rather than uni- 
form and standardized. It gave greater freedom to pupils and encouraged 
tliem to participate actively in the school programme. It encouraged selec- 
tion and enrichment of the content of the courses, at the discretion of the 
teacher, and provided for group undertakings of the comprehensive, life- 
situation variety. Emphasis was placed on creative work and aesthetic 
appreciation, and social studies were encouraged with a view to solving 
the problems of leisure and citizenship. Teaching became more skilful. 
Textbooks became more attractive and were better prepared. 

53. The expansion of secondary education during the same period 
was even more striking. In proportion to population, the average atten- 
dance of students in all ty'pes of secondary schools was three times greater 
in 1939-40 than at the beginning of the century. Much of this increase was 
caused by The Adolescent School Attendance Act,^ which became operative 
in September, 1921, and which raised the upper Umit of the compulsory 
school attendance age, with certain exemptions, to 16 years. Largely as 
a result, the average daily attendance in all secondary schools almost 
doubled between 1919-20 and 1924-25. Some of the increase was also 
caused by a rapid growth in vocational education, stimulated by grants 
from the Federal Government. The average daily attendance in vocational 
courses rose from 2,771 in 1919-20 to 35,130, in' 1939-40, but the majority 
of secondary' school students continued to be enrolled in collegiate insti- 
tutes, high schools, and continuation schools. 

54. The secondary school curriculum, like that of the elementary 
schools, was modified to fit the times. Substantial changes in the whole 
field of secondary education were instituted in 1921 and subsequent years. 
The major innovations were: enforcement of The Adolescent School Atten- 
dance Act; abolition of fees; increased legislative grants and other changes 

'9 Geo. V, Ch. 78, S.O., 1919. 


in financing; revision of courses of study; and a radical transformation of 
the examination system. The traditional course of the secondary schools 
was reduced to five years by making upper school a one-year instead of 
a two-year course, and the lower and middle school programmes were 
reduced to a minimum of five and a maximum of eight subjects in each year. 
The courses were divided into obligatory and optional subjects; only a 
limited number of subjects were prescribed; and the optional Hst became 
extensive through permission granted to local school boards to add sub- 
jects that appeared to meet local needs. 

55. At the same time the rigidity of the examination system was 
relaxed by a series of changes. As an alternative to departmental exami- 
nations, recommendation of candidates by the principal of the school was 
introduced— in 1923 for lower school, in 1932 for middle school, and in 
1935 for upper school standing. The purpose was to give the school and 
the teacher, in relation to the various subjects, greater freedom to deter- 
mine the content and placement of emphasis. The lower school and 
middle school departmental examinations were later abolished, but in 
1939-40 recommendation for upper school standing was discontinued and 
all upper school students were required to pass a departmental exami- 
nation. Requirements for university entrance were relaxed, thereby giving 
greater freedom in the arrangement of courses in secondary schools. In 
addition, the former first year of the Arts Course of ihe University of 
Toronto was discontinued in 1931-32 and, in effect, was transferred to 
collegiate institutes and high schools. 

56. The twentieth century witnessed another related development of 
great significance. This was the rapid expansion of vocational education 
at the secondary school level, referred to above. The number of pupils in 
vocational schools and courses increased between the t\vo World Wars from 
a negligible proportion to 30 per cent of the total secondary school enrol- 
ment. Vocational education began as a result of The Indttstrial Education 
Act^ of 1911, was continued by the Vocational Education Acts of 1921- and 
1930,^ and was co-ordinated with apprenticeship training through appren- 
ticeship classes by Acts of 1921- and 1928."^ The vocational courses were 
successfully made general and at tlie same time practical. However, some 
educationists, whose main interest was to increase the number of students 
who completed their education in the secondary school, opposed the segre- 
gation of the new vocational courses. A conflict arose between proponents 
of vocational and academic subjects. Happily the conflicting views were 
largely reconciled during the latter part of the period under review. 

57. With the expansion of elementary and secondary education came 
an enlargement of the responsibilities of the administrative bodies and of 
the schools. In 1909, for example, the Department of Education began to 

^1 Geo. V, Ch. 79, S.O. "20 Geo. V, Ch. 64, S.O. 

m Geo. V, Ch. 90, S.O. ^8 Geo. V, Ch. 25, S.O. 


pro\ide summer courses for teachers. At first these were oflFered to a few 
teachers of special subjects such as art, agriculture, and physical training; 
but bv the befrinnino; of the Second World War thev were available to well 
over 6,000 teachers in a \ariet)' of fields. In 1930^ the appointment of 
elementary- school inspectors, except in a number of urban centres, was 
assumed by the central authoritv, and in recent years an expanded pro- 
gramme has made necessary the appointment of provincial directors and 
assistants in fields which are new or have recently become more important. 
Larger provincial grants have been made in an effort to secure equity in 
educational opportimity throughout the province; these covered about 13 
per cent of appro\ed school costs in 1900, 20 per cent in 1930, 25 per cent 
in 1943, and approximately 40 per cent in recent years. Nor has the admin- 
istration of education remained unchanged; on the contrarv, it has been 
largely transformed in much of the province through the establishment 
of township school areas for elementarv education and larger high school 
districts for secondary education. 

58. New activities and new points of contact between tlie schools 
and society may be illustrated by the development of Junior Red Cross and 
Home and School Associations, which grew to prominence in the interval 
between the two World Wars, and bv the growth of interest in schools as 
community centres. Schools have also extended their responsibilities in 
religious education and in educational and vocational guidance. 

59. At the same time there has been a steady increase in the assistance 
offered to all t}^pes of students. Early in the century, free textbooks were 
provided in the public schools of several cities, and in 1904,- in order to 
extend this service, special grants were made available to rural schools. 
Quite recently, Dominion-Provincial Student-Aid Bursaries were intro- 
duced to supplement the scholarships offered by the universities. The 
Federal Government has established family allowances and has also helped 
to support large numbers of veterans during their university careers. A 
beginning has been made in school care for the health of the child. Follow- 
ing to some extent the example set by England after the Boer War, Ontario 
in 1907 gave permissive power to school trustees to provide and pay for 
medical and dental inspection. After the First World War, grants were 
offered toward the cost of such inspection, and city boards were em- 
powered to offer treatment for minor defects. At the present time, about 
two-thirds of the children in the elementary grades are in schools where 
some type of health ser\ice is provided, in most cases under unit or local 
boards of health. 

60. Many educators belie\e that such services and assistance should 
be increased. England, it is said, has gone much further in providing 
health services. In parts of the United States the proportion of young 

'20 Geo. V. Ch. 63, Sec. 10, S.O. "4 Edw. VII, Ch. 29, S.O. 


people in high school and college is greater than in Ontario. It is somewhat 
disquieting to discover from the census figures of 1941 that the number of 
people in Ontario with from one to four years of schooling is 75 per cent 
greater than the number with 13 years or more. In our schools today there 
are about half as many pupils in grade X as in grade VII or grade VIII, and 
there are about half as many in grade XII as in grade X. There is com- 
pulsory attendance to the age of 16 years, subject to certain exemptions. In 
spite of this, there are only about four-fifths as many pupils aged 15 as 
there are aged 14; at age 16 this proportion drops to nearly one-half; and 
at age 17 it drops to less than one-third. These facts suggest that the 
lengthening which has occurred in the minimum period of schooling is 
largely the result of compulsory attendance; leaving school is, for many 
students, an escape; it occurs because of disinterest or economic necessity, 
or because of the attitude of the parent. Some educators have suggested 
that, at present, the most difficult lesson to be learned about education is 
that the criterion of quantity has served its purpose with the establishment 
of free elementary and secondary education for all the children of all the 
people, and that the need today is for quality reckoned in terms of the 
value to the pupil and of the excellence of the teacher. Others argue that 
the great problem is to extend school services and financial assistance to 
such an extent that no child will be deprived of his opportunity for a full 
education and at the same time to strengthen a sense of responsibility in 
pupil and parent. Is it possible now, many educators ask, to obtain such 
appreciation of education by the pupil and the public that there wUl be no 
longer any need to make length of schooling alone one of the main objec- 
tives for which we have to strive? 



1. Education is everybody's business. In our society we all go to 
school; and later most of us have children in whose education we are par- 
ticularly interested. No one can be entirely indifferent to the processes 
whereby young people learn to feel, to think, to behave, and to act. Our 
schools, together with the two other essential institutions, the home and 
the church, are directly charged with the grave responsibility of educating 
our youth. 

2. Nearly everyone has opinions about education. Persons who have 
little knowledge of the subject make strong and sweeping statements about 
what the schools should do. Experienced educators and thoughtful parents 
are usually more cautious, since they realize the diflBculty of applying 
any one theory or any one practice under all circumstances and to all 
young people. They have studied the views of others with an open mind 
and have come to appreciate the reasons for views which modify or are 
contrary to their own. For example, uninformed persons may say, "Freedom 
is folly— children should be disciplined," or "Discipline depraves— children 
should be free." Both views are at the same time right and wrong. Neither 
offers exclusively more than an obvious half-truth and proof of personal 
bias. But the thoughtful person searches for a formula that will reduce the 
error and enlarge the truth of both statements. It will be a workable formula, 
flexible enough for adaptation within broad limits to different situations 
and different personalities. 

3. This chapter on the aims of education is a record of our efforts 
to think through and express in simple terms some of the more general 
problems of education. An attempt will be made, firstly, to sketch the 
bases for various educational philosophies or theories; secondly, to identify 
fundamental issues in education; thirdly, to discuss certain cardinal virtues; 
fourthly, to consider the force of habits, customs, and conventions; fifthly, 
to outline the general scope of the curriculum; sixthly, to deal with the role 
of the teacher; seventhly, to make reference to the development of the 
whole child; and finallv, to set forth nine aims of education. 



Bases for Various Educational Philosophies or Theories 

4. We shall refer to only two main schools of thought, commonly 
designated as "the traditional" and "the progressive". To identify them, we 
may think of the traditionalist as one who believes in strict discipline and 
the mastering of school subjects, and of the progressive as one who puts 
emphasis on interest and learning by experience. But in practice no edu- 
cator is an exclusive traditionalist or progressive. This twofold classification, 
moreover, is complicated by other divisions. Religious conviction, for ex- 
ample, may affect or determine one's educational philosophy. Frequently, 
too, those who support a particular practice in education are quite unaware 
of the assumptions on which their statements are based. Hence, the same 
individual may urge teachers to do things which are contradictory in their 
educational implications. We can therefore get little enlightenment from 
a classification of the schools of educational thought unless we first try 
to understand why people think as they do. 

5. As suggested above, some people are influenced more consistently 
than others by anything which has deep personal significance for them. 
Nearly everyone holds his own life dear, has loved-ones whom he regards 
with peculiar affection, and sets a special value on his own possessions. 
But people vary in the degree of their personal attachment, especialh' 
when the list is extended to ideas, habits, and institutions: the church and 
tenets of faith; the school attended and type of schooling received; one's 
native or adopted country; and any way of doing things that has brought 
success or satisfaction. Indeed, we may bring to mind a person who warmly 
defends any opinion he has expressed, and becomes even more heated and 
obstinate when the arguments of others reveal the weakness of his own 

6. Life without warmth of feeling would not be life as we know it. 
Moreover, because of our limitations, our irrational passions, and our mis- 
takes, we are compelled frequently to face crises and tragedies in which 
only the strength of our faith will sustain us. A glorious illustration of 
faith is to be found in the qualities which enabled Churchill and Britain 
to save democracy when cold reason might have demonstrated tliat their 
cause was lost. 

7. With this background, it is not difficult to understand why some 
people are insistent that a greater effort should be made in school to ensure 
a passionate love of country, strong personal attachment to established 
ways of living, knowledge and appreciation of cultural achievements, and 
acceptance of recognized values and articles of faith. Strict discipline is 
frequently demanded because it is needed to achieve these specific ends. 

8. Let us now consider another viewpoint. There are persons who are 
influenced less than others by the current scene. They are more impressed 
by change, and they see little reason for regarding the external form of 
anvthing as permanent or as constantly valid. Some of them, however, 


mav sec more or less constancy in the ideas and ideals of which these 
forms are an expression; they may believe that it is possible to state pre- 
cisely what these endurino; ideas or yalues are. Those who hold this view 
are almost certain to be strong supporters of existing institutions as em- 
bodiments of these verities, and their views on education are likely to be 
similar to those described in the foregoing paragraph. Many others, how- 
e\er, are reluctant to assert the imiversal or abiding truth of any belief, 
principle, or criterion of value. They regard it as self-evident that learning 
is essential to life, and thev assume that free access to facts and ideas, 
and the disclosure of full information, are at once rights and obligations. 
But thev do not believe that it is possible to make any general statement 
that must always be accepted by others as true. They may assiune that 
fullness of life is good, and that what restricts or curtails life is bad. They 
refuse, however, to prescribe any set pattern of living for others, or to 
limit the meaning of "good" or "bad" by prescribed rules of conduct. From 
their assumptions it may follow that deception and violence are wrong 
and that honesty and equity are right. But they prefer not to speak in terms 
of "should" and "ought", or "sin" and "evil", because they believe that 
values have meaning for others only as they arise in experience and operate 
in practice. 

9. It is apparent that those who profess these latter ideas are opti- 
mistic about the ability of people to find a way of living and to work out 
a solution to human problems. They have confidence in democracy as an 
ideal, or way of life, but they do not believe in a dominant attachment to 
any existing institution or ideal. They see less need for steadfastness, loyalty, 
and courage, than for resourcefulness to meet new situations. They are 
impressed by the achievements of science in the relatively brief period that 
investigation of the natural world has been unhampered by fixed beliefs 
and other controls of authority. Hence, they declare that it is not only 
desirable but imperative that men should be similarly free to work out a 
solution for peaceful living in national and international societies, and 
that no cherished pattern of thinking should be allowed to stand in the way. 
They contend that the record of scientific victories over disease is sufficient 
evidence for believing that hardships and disasters such as poverty and 
war are not inevitable, provided the minds of men are freed from prejudice 
and other restraints against intelligent action. 

Fundamental Issues in Education 

10. Once this point of view is understood, it becomes clear why some 
people have a concept of education basically diflFerent from that of others. 
Instead of insisting on a knowledge of history, civics, and national litera- 
ture to inculcate patriotism, they would have pupils investigate modem 
problems in social studies in order to extend their understanding of the 
world. Instead of requiring acceptance by young persons of values, behefs. 


and modes of behaviour, they would encourage critical and honest inquiry 
in every field. They would rely chiefly on the inherent interest of students 
in their work, and they would allow the learners to discipline themselves. 
In their opinion, no subject or organized scheme of knowledge should be 
held to be of value in itself. They maintain that the important thing in the 
learning situation is what happens to the learner and that, unless the 
pupil sees a genuine need for learning what is taught, he may acquire 
notions and attitudes decidedly at variance with the course of study and 
the teacher's intentions. It is as vain, they say, to expect that insistence on 
memory of organized facts will result in predictable knowledge and wis- 
dom as it is to think that mental gymnastics in a subject such as mathematics 
will train the mind to cope with any problem of life. Accordingly, they con- 
tend that the school should broaden its scope to provide for the full 
development of the whole child and to meet the needs of different indi- 
viduals. From this point of view, the content and the method of instruction 
should have all the vitality of out-of-school experience; for learning is the 
reconstruction of experience and not merely the memory of facts and 
mastery of skills. 

11. When one appreciates the strength of the reasons for thinking 
about life and education in these different ways, and is tolerant enough to 
understand views with which he does not agree, he will not resort to 
sweeping denunciations of either the traditional or the progressive point of 

12. One of the most difficult of the problems basic to all educational 
thought is the relationship between the individual and society. It has always 
been a vexed question, and it cannot be solved in all its details for all time. 
No one can, however, make useful pronouncements on the aims of education 
without adopting some definite position in regard to it. Has the individual 
a right to respect as an individual? How much freedom for the individual, 
and what kinds of freedom, are compatible with the requirements of 
society? How much authority, and what kinds of authority, in society and 
social institutions are reconcilable with individual freedom? Is the authority 
of society the basic right and the worth of the individual of secondary 

13. The individual has a right to respect and freedom as one who shares 
in the dual heritage of the Western World. Respect for the individual has 
a basis in Christianity and Judaism, and freedom of thought has a basis in 
our intellectual heritage from Greece. The authority of society is a necessity, 
but certainly not a right to be expanded arbitrarily. The authority of society 
should be definitely maintained, but only within the necessary minimum 
limits. Educationally, this means a general approval of a programme for 
personal development, and a resolution to keep obligatory requirements of 
subject matter and other external controls on the school and pupil within 


the limits of what is tiul)' essential. The following paragraphs set forth 
more exactly the educational implications of this position. 

14. There are few educators who would not agree that the schools 
should be concerned, above everything else, with the kind of person they 
are helping to produce. We should never forget that the verb "to educate", 
as defined in the Concise Oxford Dictionary, means "to give intellectual 
and moral training". It is the duty of the school to aid its pupils to develop 
strength of character. Knowing the evil that sharp intellects, unsupported 
by moral foundations, have wrought in recent years in many countries, we 
make no apology for discussing first the second prong of the definition— "to 
give . . . moral training". We do not believe, however, that education is 
on the horns of the awful dilemma of choosing between first-class brains 
and second-class characters on the one hand and, on the other, second-class 
brains and first-class characters. In character formation, the problem is to 
determine the extent to which society should go in demanding conformity 
to approved patterns of thought and behaviour. If the school and other 
institutions were to give no direction or assistance to boys and girls, the 
anticipated result would be moral chaos. Less obviously, but no less truly, 
if we go too far in insisting that vouth concur entirely in the views of their 
elders, we may expect continued dependence and weakness in moral fibre. 
The school itself cannot move far, in either direction, from examples set 
elsewhere by adult society. To be much more exacting is to encourage lip- 
service and hypocrisy. To give much more freedom is to invite disaster. 
Moreover, individual pupils differ in this respect no less than in mental 
ability, although the cause may more often be found in parental attitudes 
than in native endowment. Some young people are ready to accept any 
statement without question, prefer to be told what to do, and need to be 
compelled to do it. Others show, in varying degrees, more independence 
in thought and more willingness and ability to accept responsibilit)'. Since 
adults differ in their attitudes and. in their powers of self-appraisal, they 
mav err bv advising what suits themselves and not what is suitable for a 
vounger generation. It follows that we must be careful in our recommenda- 
tions to allow discretion to individual principals and teachers. Our hope is 
that thev will have the sensitivit)' and wisdom to see and do the best that 
mav be done in particular circumstances. 

Cardinal Virtues 

15. There are two virtues about which there can be no question— honesty, 
and Christian love. They reflect the intellectual and religious heritage of 
Western Civilization. Honesty means trutiifulness and fair dealing, which 
are the very foundations of freedom. Christian love means kindness and 
consideration for others, which are mandatory by the Golden Rule. Honesty 
and love must be taught by precept and even more by example, as absolute 


rights, or eternal verities, which everyone must accept, defend, and strive 
to practise. To insist on their acceptance will do no violence to the 
conscience of any cliild or parent. No earnest Cliristian or Jew, or sincere 
adherent of any other enduring faith or philosophy of intelligence and 
good will, could have conscientious scruples regarding these two virtues. 
They may be taught whole-heartedly and without reservation. 

16. Without honesty, societ)' disintegrates. Fair dealing is the indis- 
pensable basis of community life. Truthfulness and respect for truth, no 
less than free access to truth, are essential to the operation of democracy 
and to the safeguarding of democracy against false doctrines which may 
threaten to overthrow it. Without love of our fellow-men life is not worth 
living. There is need for more consideration toward those with whom we 
come into immediate contact, and need for more consideration toward 
those who will be aflFected less directly but no less surely by our beliefs 
and our practices. There is a warning to the world in the recent spread of 
ideologies under which kindness is weakness and pity is evidence of guilt. 
For the preservation of our society the school must teach honesty and 
Christian love. 

17. But the school must not be content with theory. It must teach 
honesty and love in practice, and thus educate for service to one's fellow- 
men, to one's country, and to God. As the pupil recognizes the obligation 
to be honest, he must give value in his work and in every transaction. 
Because he recognizes the obligation of love, he must seek to translate it 
into action. Whether in relation to one other person, to several persons, or 
to all— whether at home, at school, in business, or as a citizen— he must 
fulfil this dual obligation to the best of his ability. In his education, the 
school must help him not only to understand and to accept these obligations, 
but also to acquire the disposition, the will, and the ability, to live daily 
by the application of this divine precept. 

18. In teaching these universal values the school cannot work alone. 
The enemy of honesty and love in action is the ubiquitous demon named 
selfishness. The church, in particular, must build and continuously strengthen 
the spiritual foundations of the basic virtues. The home must provide 
security for their growth in understanding and practice. School, home, and 
church should stand together to counteract more effectively those influences 
in society which offer rewards for selfishness. Gradually, the whole social 
environment of future generations may then perceptibly improve as an 
educative agency. A century ago, when formal education for all boys and 
girls was about to become a reality, there were optimistic predictions that 
the gaols would be empty when the schools were filled. If progress to date 
has been slow, the lessons to be learned are that the school has partly failed 
in this regard, that it is not the only instrument of education, and that it 
cannot achieve its high purpose without assistance. In an age of specializa- 
tion it is easy to forget a truism of the ancients that everything in the life 


of the communit}' is a teacher. The school must seek every ally if it is to 
prove that falsehood and deceit, selfishness and violence, are wrong; that 
truthfulness, fair dealing, and love are rigrht; and that what is sometimes 
called self-sacrifice is voluntar\' service by those who understand the 
obligations of freedom. 

19. Honestv and Christian love are the absolutes of a free society. They 
mav therefore be taught by the strongest means at the school's command— 
an explicit acceptance that they are right. If this be indoctrination we 
accept the stricture. 

20. From the basic concepts of honesty and love there flow other cardinal 
virtues. Lord Elton refers to some of these in his book entitled St. George 
or the Dragon:^ "They are the basis of civilisation itself— loyalty, courage, 
endurance, discipline . . . they can all be reduced to a single quality- 
unselfishness." He describes them as the military virtues, but he does not 
mean that they represent militarism: he beheves that militarism adapts 
them to its own use. They may, indeed, be distorted in pursuit of unworthy 
ends, or be carried too far in obedience to arbitrary authoritv, as may be 
seen all too clearly in the evidence of the Nuremburg trials, and in the 
confessions nearer home of blind adherents to Communism. It is imperative 
that the young citizen of a democracy be trained to exercise these virtues 
with critical judgment. His loyalty will have the strength of sincerity if he 
voluntarily accepts the object as good after thorough and frank investi- 
gation. His loyalty, courage, endurance, and discipline should be related 
to purposes which he has found by his own experience to be desirable. The 
aim should be not merely to overcome weakness but, from discrimination, 
to develop strength. As intimated above, the pursuit of truth must be a 
main purpose of education in a democracy. We cannot allow our youth to 
mouth, without regard to their own ideas or convictions, the dogmas or 
cliches prescribed by some gaideiter or commissar under a totalitarian 

The Force of Habits, Customs, and Conventions 

21. As distinct from these and other cardinal virtues, there are habits, 
customs, and conventions, of the society in which the school is placed. What 
balance should be struck between the enforcement of the mores of the 
community and the moral development of the child? 

22. On this question, we believe that the school should, in effect, declare 
to the younger generation: "These are the standards and rules of conduct 
of the society to which we belong. Some you will recognize as unquestion- 
ably right, binding at all times on all of us, and therefore to be followed 
regardless of consequence. About others there will be disagreement. Some 
of these you should examine carefully to see where and how they should 
apply, some you will have to accept tentatively as right until you are in a 

^Lord Elton, St. George or the Dragon, London: Collins, 1942, pp. 24-25. 


position to decide for yourself. But, in every case, whatever other sanction 
they may have, these are rules which most people have declared to be 
necessary for living together. They make our way of living possible. There- 
fore, even where there is no clear issue of absolute right and wrong, every- 
one is obliged to obey these rules or pay the penalty of social disapproval. 
It is true that some people do not follow all of them. But no one can afford 
to do things of wliich others disapprove unless and until he has gained 
their approval in other ways. For a young person to begin life with the 
handicap of social disapproval is like entering a swimming race with a 
heavy weight on one's back. Those in charge of this school are bound to 
tell you about these standards and rules of conduct, and to insist that you 
learn at the beginning to live in the way that society approves and not in 
a way that will certainly be to your disadvantage and that, indeed, may be 

23. To some people, the balance here may appear to be weighted heavily 
on the side of conformity. The point of view does, indeed, clearly recognize 
the advantages of group life. The safety and happiness of each is dependent 
on the rest of the community. Man flowers not in isolation but in a garden 
of his fellows. The freedom which he asserts for himself he must accord 
to his fellow-men. More than that, there are two corollaries to this principle 
of conformity which must be given equal emphasis. 

24. In the first place, there can be no insistence that the pupil accept 
as right or true what he does not truly believe. The school does not tell the 
pupil that t-h-r-o-u-g-h is the most desirable or only possible way of spelling 
"through". It tells the pupil that this is the way it is spelled and that, 
whether he thinks it a good way or not, he must learn to spell it in that 
way. Similarly, with exceptions already noted, when the school teaches a 
code of conduct it says to the pupil that this is what people or institutions 
declare to be right or desirable. Meticulous regard for truth is the very 
core of education. We have said that in our society people have a right 
to think and that young people must be taught to think. About this there 
can be no reservation. The school may honestly see to it that young people 
have every opportunity to become thoroughly familiar with what we believe 
to be good. It may strive to sustain the "habitual vision of greatness". But 
it cannot cheat, and it should not use force or artifice of any kind to restrict 
the pupil's search for truth. The pupil may be required to conform in con- 
duct. He must not be required to relinquish his right to freedom of thought. 
He must reconcile, in his own mind and in his own conscience, the worth 
of the individual and the claims of his group. 

25. In the second place, the requirement of strict conformity with codes 
of conduct must be reduced as rapidly as the pupil can assume responsi- 
bility. There is no absolute or unlimited right to freedom in action. Such 
freedom as any of us has was gained and kept by proof of ability to use it, 
either by our forefathers or by ourselves. But the capacity to take responsi- 


biliU" can only be acquired and extended by practice. The educator must 
therefore be prepared to take some risks, and must be in a suflBciently 
strong position to share the blame for his pupils' mistakes. The better his 
reputation as a teacher in otlier respects, the further he will dare to go. 
He must extend the scope of pupil responsibiht)^ gradually and judiciously. 
He mav be able to do disappointingly little if the home does not co-operate 
or if the community is strongly prejudiced. But, under favourable circum- 
stances, young people of 16 years of age should have arrived at tlie point 
where they can decide and carry out their own decisions on such matters 
as the time to be given to work and to recreation, and the money to be 
spent on clothing, minor necessities, or amusements. Many teachers will 
think it a counsel of perfection to say that pupils of 16 should be able, 
individually and collectively, to work without compulsion and to make, 
obey, and enforce, appropriate rules of behaviour. But every teacher knows 
that some pupils can do it. Education worthy of the name must aim always 
to enlarge the opportimities for pupils to assume responsibility. This is the 
practical counterbalance to the initial almost complete conformity which 
adults are obliged to impose on infants. 

26. Here is a major part of the secret which enables a good school to 
combine order and decorum with a sense of latitude and ease conducive to 
self-determination, self-control, and voluntary co-operation. There is respect 
for authority, there is respect for the cardinal virtues, and there is respect 
for the pupil. We have endeavoured to explain our stand with respect to 
the basic issue of freedom and authority in education. The next step is to 
apply these principles— and especially the concept of responsibility— to other 
educational problems. 

The General Scope of the Curriculum 

27. We now come to the first part of the definition of the verb "to 
educate"— "to give intellectual . . . training". Before we set forth certain 
aims for the schools, it may be well to discuss some general problems rela- 
tive to building the curriculum. Firstly, there is the conflict between 
emphasis on factual knowledge and basic skills and the development of 
attitudes, interests, and general abilities. There has never been a decade 
without critics to lash the elementary school for failure to teach the three 
R's as effectively as in the golden age to which the particular critic belonged. 
The charge that there has been deterioration is false, unless the school is 
to be blamed for accepting and retaining all children regardless of ability. 
It is true, however, that people have been, and still are, by no means as 
well grounded in fundamentals as political, social, and economic efficiency 
require. What is the cause? 

28. The chief cause, in our opinion, is that the school is driven to 
demand too much from its pupils. Instead of discriminating between the 
minimum that is necessary and the copious variety that may be desirable. 


the adult is carelessly lavish in his demands on the young. No wonder youth 
gives up trying to please and becomes reconciled to its elders' disappoint- 

29. The first step away from this maladjustment of ends and means should 
be to limit the requirements imposed on the pupil in the name of society. 
This means defining in minimum terms what society must require everyone 
to be able to do. It must require, we may assume, at least that pupils be able 
to use the ordinary means of communication to the extent employed in 
everyday affairs. The next step is to translate this miiiimum necessity into 
curriculum requirements that every ordinary young person can meet within 
the school, and to teach for mastery, not mere proficiency. If this were done, 
the school would be invulnerable to the charge of failure to teach simple 
spelling and arithmetic and the ability to use and understand direct and 
simple English, provided the skills so taught and required are indeed 
ordinarily used, and are not abilities infrequently employed and forgotten 
through disuse before they are needed in special circumstances. Is that all 
the school should teach? Of course not. But it is all that should be required 
for every pupil. 

30. In addition, there are various desirable fields of interest and appreci- 
ation in the world of ideas, in the arts, and in physical activities. In these 
enrichments of life, there should be wide freedom of choice if interest and 
appreciation are to be deep-seated and abiding. The imposition of examina- 
tions, and teaching which insists on "the one right way", may stifle the 
growth of the attitudes and general abilities we hope to develop. In later 
adolescence, however, the student may be obliged to submit himself, even 
in these fields, to the stricter discipline of scholarship or to the exacting 
requirements of technical skill. 

31. Between the small enclosure of necessary skills and the broad range 
of varied interests, is the middle ground where obligation and freedom 
must blend. Typical of its content, and most important, is anything con- 
nected with human relations, such as knowledge and appreciation of values 
in life from histor)' and literature, or abilities acquired by practice in living, 
working, conferring, deciding, and acting together. In this middle ground, 
stipulated requirements and examinations on the one hand, and freedom 
on the other, must be applied or granted with equal discretion. At this 
point, the pupils' concept of responsibility and the sensitivity and wisdom 
of their teachers are of the utmost significance. 

32. To an increasing degree pupils should be able, as they mature, to 
choose their reading material and, in social studies, to carry on their own 
investigations, conduct their own conferences, and keep their own records. 
In all subjects and activities they should grow in capacity to evaluate their 
own achievement. As powers such as these are acquired, the need for 
external pressure grows less and less. 



33. The ioregoing leads us to another question. Should we think of the 
school programme in terms of organized subject matter, or in terms of 
educati\e experience? If there is room for both, where and when should a 
place be gi\en to each? In present practice, the experience concept has 
successfully invaded the kindergarten and primary grades of the elementary 
school, but has gained less and less recognition in successively higher grades. 
Bv grade VII, if not before, teacher and pupil have little time for thinking 
of life situations in school, and must address themselves for m.ost of the day 
to the study of subject matter organized in separate categories. Soon the 
transition is all but complete. The motivation has changed from an interest 
in life and a desire to learn something obviously worth while, to a desire 
to please, or to escape trouble, by learning something which the teacher 
says has value. In experience, one sees a bit of life with all its varied 
elements, and learning takes place in terms of the whole. In teaching a 
subject, it is usual to concentrate repeatedly on isolated elements, although 
there may be some provision for learning as a whole if the approach to a 
topic be comprehensive, as in the unit method. 

34. The teaching of subjects ensures that the child learns at least some- 
thing of the accomplishments of men in the past, of current practice, and of 
facts or values, arranged in an accepted pattern. The definite character of 
a subject enables both teacher and pupil to get satisfaction from measurable 
achievement. This is especially true where the content is precise, as in 
spelling and arithmetic, or in mathematics and science, or in subjects where 
the content is remote from ordinar)' life and entirely new, as in English 
grammar and foreign languages. It is progressively less true of social studies, 
English composition, English literature, music, and art, even if they be 
taught for technical purposes. Yet such is the comfort derived from marks 
as seemingly tangible evidence of eJQFort and achievement, that the temp- 
tation is to accept the faith of the realist that "ever)'thing exists in some 
quantit}' and can be measured". The pedagogical conscience gives the 
teacher an uneasy feeling that time is being frittered away unless the pupils 
have acquired something which a test will reveal. Consequently, a history 
teacher, for example, may give more time and emphasis to content which 
can easily be organized and measured by examinations than to content of 
a more subtle nature, no matter how significant the latter may be. 

35. It would be rash indeed, in connection with this perplexing problem, 
to suggest any radical departure from the established trend. We do urge 
later, however, a less sudden shift away from the experience concept. At 
the time of early adolescence there should be experimentation during part 
of the school day with educative experience other than the study of desig- 
nated subject-matter or the acquirement of physical skills. Subjects of study 
should receive increasing emphasis through the school years, and should 
occupy nearly all the time of students after approximately the age of 16. 


We frankly declare, at this point, our conviction that mastery of subject- 
matter is the best present measure of effort and the most promising source 
of satisfaction in achievement. We are not unduly concerned that a pro- 
portion of school tasks should be hard and unpalatable, because much of 
life is equally so. Yet, we are favourably disposed to a prudent extension 
of practices based on the experience concept, as a previous observation in 
this paragraph has shown. Perhaps if more can be taught that way in school, 
life itself will be made less difficult, and the method will be better adapted 
to life. 

The Role of the Teacher 

36. At present there is one handicap to significant advance. The pro- 
fessional and personal qualifications of our teachers determine how far one 
may go in recommending any practice that is difficult and new. It is no 
slight to the teaching profession, or to any other profession, to admit that 
only the more capable members are able to employ the more difficult and 
advanced techniques. But all who employ teachers and all who are re- 
sponsible for their professional education must ask themselves whether they 
could not strive harder to enlist the services of men and women of high 
quality, and to educate them more liberally for a responsibility which can, 
and should, require both a broad professional knowledge and insight and 
judgment far above the average. It is one thing to present clearly the 
organized facts of a subject and to see that they are acquired by pupils 
and retained by them until the time of examination; it is an altogether 
different thing to educate young people, to recognize subtle differences, to 
develop responsibility and keen and abiding interests and desirable attitudes. 
To do the latter requires the use of flexible and comprehensive teaching 
methods which will help individual pupils toward these objectives, and at 
the same time ensure adequate competence in knowledge and skill. These 
methods cannot be taught as a mere technique. The ability to teach in this 
way is acquired when a person of high personal qualifications is prepared 
for his profession by a broad education which gives him the resources of 
educational philosophy and psychology and of much general knowledge 
and experience, and so enables him to understand the newer methods and 
to devise procedures suitable for particular purposes and circumstances. 
A perfect programme might be handed down from some educational Mount 
Sinai, yet if competent, sensitive, and wise teachers were not available to 
put it into operation, little would be accomplished. 

The Development of the Whole Child 

37. There has, in any case, been a meaningful change of emphasis in 
education during the past 50 years. The traditional school was concerned 
almost entirely with the teaching of subjects, which were, moreover, almost 
wholly intellectual, such as reading, spelling, writing, arithmetic, grammar. 



and geography, in the elementary school, and foreign languages and mathe- 
matics in the secondary school. Any thought given to the child was chiefly 
in relation to his progress in these subjects. During the eighteenth and 
nineteenth centuries, there were notable critics of this narrow purpose in 
education, including Rousseau, Pestalozzi, and Froebel. But there was no 
widespread adoption of a broader view until the Froebelian movement 
gained strength at the end of the nineteenth century. In Ontario, James L. 
Hughes, Chief Inspector of Schools for Toronto, was its chief exponent. 
Froebelianism stood for the "child-centred" school, and for growth through 
creative and expressive activity. On this continent, especially, it led to a 
new concept of education as a process concerned with every aspect of the 
pupil's growth to maturity or, as it came to be phrased, with the develop- 
ment of the whole child. 

38. As a result, the school of today has very much wider and more varied 
interests than the school of the past. For example, it is interested in the 
physical health of the child: it provides instruction in health, physical 
education, and recreational facilities; and it may provide medical and dental 
inspection, and milk or other supplements to nutrition. Educationists are 
increasingly aware of the need for good lighting, attractive surroundings, 
and ever)'thing conducive to health as a positive state of well-being. Much 
has been spoken and written about the glories of the 'little old red school- 
house"; but this school was, in fact, often unattractive and unhealthy. 
Attractive schools engender a sense of beauty. Good lighting, heating, and 
ventilation make for better physical and mental health of pupils. Educators 
are interested now in the emotional life of the child, in the development of 
desirable interests and attitudes and, though not with complete confidence 
as yet, in other aspects of mental health. Tliey are concerned about the 
activity of leisure. They seek to give the child some appreciation of music, 
art, and the aesthetics of life, and to develop manual and creative skills. 
They are beginning to give counsel and help of other kinds: guidance 
programmes have done much to assist the pupil in his choice of a vocation, 
though little, as yet, to help him in his everyday problems of life. In these 
and other ways, education for the development of the whole child has 
become in some degree a reality. 

39. It must not be forgotten that these developments owe their existence 
and vitality to a new philosophy. Too often in education the original impetus 
of the spirit or idea has been lost, and the end result has been a dried 
husk of formahty. If guidance, for example, should ever become a control 
over the destiny of the child, imposed with the voice of authority, it would 
completely defeat its present purpose. The underlying aim of every new 
movement contributory to the broad programme just described has been 
to enable pupils to act for themselves. The vitality of this aim is all- 
important. For the most part, development must take place as an incidental 
to the progress of the pupil through school. A teacher cannot interrupt a 


routine lesson and say, "We shall now turn our attention to your personal 
growth." Even the provision of subjects and activities directly related to 
child development is less important than the spirit which pervades the 
school. For the same reason, everything that has already been said in this 
chapter has a bearing on what we believe should be sought in education 
for the growth of the child as a whole. 


40. In the hght of all this discussion, we may now, as promised earlier 
in the chapter, set forth certain specific aims for our schools. These are 
not separate and distinct, but interrelated. Our introductor)^ discussion is 
a necessar)' prelude to them because we believe that no question relating 
to the aims of education admits of an answer without a reference to ultimate 
convictions about human nature and human destiny, and about society 
and the individual and the fundamental relationship between the two. We 
believe the aims of education should include the following: 

A. To develop capacity to apprehend and practise basic virtues. 

B. To develop the power to think clearly, independently, and cou- 

C. To develop talent to understand the views of others and to express 
one's own views effectively. 

,D. To develop competence for a suitable occupation. 

E. To develop good health. 

F. To develop aptitudes for recreation. 

G. To develop characteristics for happy family relations. 
H. To develop good citizenship. 

I. To develop the concept that education is a continuing process 
beyond the school. 

To Develop Capacity to Apprehend and Practise Basic Virtues 

41. We reiterate that the two essential allies of the school in this regard 
are the home and the church. By precept and by example gifted teachers 
can engender in their pupils certain immutable values accepted, and indeed 
won, by mankind as the expression of his highest ideals in terms of beauty, 
truth, and goodness. Mankind has found in the practice of these ideals the 
deepest satisfaction as he seeks to serve his fellow-men, his country, and 
his God. The importance of the individual and the significance of his 
obligations, which form part of our spiritual heritage, are the foundations 
of our democratic society. The meaning of life is made manifest in adherence 
and obedience to ideals that lie outside oneself and that transcend one's 
personal interests. Inspiration and aspiration are never self-centred. With- 
out proclaiming any creed or doctrine we know that in our democracy the 
Christian ideals as personified and exemplified by Jesus have an appeal to 
all persons of good will, and are the surest common ground for an edu- 


cational programme related to the pupil as a person. The attitude of Jesus 
toward children, His understanding of human nature and behaviour, His 
charity and loving kindness toward all men, form a perfect model for a 
true democracy in the classroom, the community, and the nation. 

To Develop the Power to Think Clearly, Independenthj, and Courageously 

42. Power to think clearly, independently, and courageously is the result 
of intellectual and moral development. A boy or girl may be a storehouse 
of facts and yet be uneducated. Power to relate, to analyze, to synthesize, 
and to think logically is the distinguishing mark of the human race. For 
earning a living and for discharging the duties of citizenship and other 
personal obligations in a democracy, this power is sorely needed in the 
individual who is confronted constantly with social, economic, and political 
problems, the solution of which will determine the welfare and progress 
of our society and indeed tlie very survival of our civilization. 

To Develop Talent to Understand the Views of Others and to Express One's 
Own Views Effectively 

43. Schools do not prepare their pupils as one might mould clay figures 
in an otherwise empty room. Youth must be prepared for effective partici- 
pation in the affairs of groups, large and small, and of society in general. 
Groups, and the society which they compose, are only possible if their 
members are capable of understanding others, and of communicating with 
them. They need the qualit)' of tolerance, as well as the lucid expression, 
by each member, of his own opinion, arrived at by clear, independent, and 
courageous thought. History' records that in personal and public communi- 
cation, misunderstanding and hostility have resulted from the mere inability 
to communicate adequately true feelings and ideas. 

To Develop Competence for a Suitable Occupation 

44. The late Lord Tweedsmuir once declared with truth that one must 
live before one can live well. To have work for which one is ill suited is 
detrimental to the individual and injurious to society. Although the schools 
cannot provide a great deal of the practical experience necessary for expert- 
ness in any vocation, they can lay the foundations for subsecjuent occu- 
pational proficiencv. They have also the responsibility of placing before 
every pupil the nature of the various callings in which he or she manifests 
interest, and the opportunities they provide. We encourage vocational 
guidance; but we are of opinion that teachers should guide only. The 
decision with respect to one's calling must be made by each adolescent, 
aided and counselled by his parents, and always with due regard to the 
probable opportunity for obtaining remunerative employment in any 
particular field. It should ever be kept before pupils in the secondary school 
that there are satisfactions in any occupation beyond the amount of the 
"take-home" pay, however large that may be. Caie should be taken to 


engender in pupils the need for hard work and for assiduous application 
to the task in hand. Any false ideas that youth may acquire from some 
older persons that there may be short-cuts to worthy attainment, without 
hard work, should be corrected. Moreover, efforts should be made to impress 
on pupils that all who work hard and honestly, whatever their calling may 
be, are partners in the good society and warrant social recognition. 

To Develop Good Health 

45. Directly and indirectly the school may contribute to the individual 
attainment of this aim. As mentioned earlier in this chapter, attractive and 
suitable buildings and grounds advance the health of pupils. That they 
should receive training and practice in healthful living, through health 
services and by other means in the school, is now properly expected by 
their parents. It should be emphasized that the concept of good health 
today connotes not only physical well-being but also mental poise and 
nervous balance, and professional aid should be available to this end. Thus 
the teacher, through the development in every pupil of interest and re- 
sponsibility, may do much to produce a well rounded personality. 

To Develop Aptitudes for Recreation 

46. "All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy" is an axiom equally 
applicable to the juvenile, the adolescent, and the adult. Release from the 
daily routine and re-creation for tomorrow's task are to be found in the 
proper use of leisure time. Recreational programmes within the school 
should encompass athletic activities and also opportunities to participate in 
literary, musical, and other aesthetic activities. Poor in outlook is the man 
or woman who cannot find outlets for creative enterprises outside the 
factory, the field, the forest, the mine, the oflBce, or the home. Recreation 
is a part of good health, physical and mental. 

To Develop Characteristics for Happy Family Relations 

47. Any idea that children have innate characteristics that will ensure 
happy family relations is no longer tenable. The school can impart 
knowledge, develop skills, and inculcate attitudes required for good family 
life. Directly, by means of courses in home economics, industrial arts, social 
studies, and natural science, and indirectly, by the teacher's example, the 
most vital factor in society— the home— may be better undergirded and 
buttressed against the present current of domestic infelicity, separation, and 

To Develop Good Citizenship 

48. Much that was stated in the introductory paragraphs of this chapter 
is germane to the consideration of this topic. Tn most of the politics of past 
centuries only a limited circle of people needed education for the govern- 
ance of the country. In a democracy everyone participates in some measure 


in the role of governor, as he or she contributes to the sovereign will of 
the people. It should be impressed on pupils that this status not only carries 
ri2;hts but also imposes obligations. That is a lesson that citizens in de- 
mocracies find it difficult to remember except in periods of national 
emergency. It is a lesson which must be applied constantly in community, 
pro\inicial, national, and international affairs. If it is not carefully heeded, 
it will be relatively easy for demagogues or dictators to take over the reins 
of government. Students, the citizens of tomorrow, must be warned against 
sacrificing their democratic birthright to participate in the solution of public 
problems for empty promises of greater personal securitv'. There can be no 
assurance of personal benefits to the individual if the people relinquish their 
power. Large benefits are of little value if they are conferred for selfish 
purposes by a political or economic master. Opportunity to achieve for 
oneself is more precious than anv totalitarian concession. To be a good 
citizen one must be informed about the factors involved in any civic, 
national, or international issue. The citizen must, however, have the wit 
to draw on the opinion of experts for special or technical knowledge which 
he does not himself possess. Yet he must make his o^vn final decision after 
judging the validity of conflicting claims. Great, and indeed paramount, is 
his responsibility to distinguish reason from emotion, facts from propaganda, 
and the true from the false. Herein is the compass of all our educational 

To Develop the Concept that Education is a Continuing Process Beyond 
the School 

49. Sometimes pupils believe that when they leave school their education 
is complete. There may have been a period when certain gifted individuals 
had a mastery of all knowledge hitherto discovered by mankind. But that 
day is past. No person can be a master or expert in many fields. Lie is bound 
to be ignorant of many areas of human endeavour and achievement. Care 
must constantly be taken to inculcate in pupils a sense of intellectual 
humility, and at the same time to develop within them a thirst for new 
knowledge. Every pupil should realize that, as one peak of knowledge is 
surmounted, farther ranges will appear on, and beckon from, the horizon. 
Not the least part of the intellectual and spiritual endowment that a school 
may bestow on its pupils is the sense of quest for, and the spirit for discovery' 
regarding, new facts, ideas, and ideals. Schools should be centres for pro- 
moting adult education, and educators should be conscious of the necessity 
for laying the foundation for it during school life. 

50. In order to attain these aims, it is necessary to have public support. 
Surely that support will be forthcoming. Much is said in Canada about our 
vast natural resources and propert)'. Millions of dollars have been, and are 
being, poured into their development. It is trite to observe that our main 


natural resource is our youth. Yet it remains true that the development and 
calibre of our youth will determine the Ontario and the Canada of to- 

51. We have reason to be proud of Ontario's educational system. But 
education must always be on the march in order to meet new conditions. 
If those who are responsible for our educational system ever beUeve that 
it has attained a stage of final perfection, it will have become a crystallized 
agency for indoctrination. 

52. The second half of the twentieth centur)' demands a restatement of 
aims and proposals. The accomplishment of these will require the mobiliza- 
tion of every possible resource. In our conviction that the people of Ontario 
will respond to that demand, we believe that their contribution to the 
support of schools and the shaping of educational policies will advance the 

53. Finally, we emphasize the need for a wider provision of educational 
opportunity for children, wherever they may be situated throughout the 
province. Pavments for education are not as tribute to a foreign power, or 
the exaction of some privileged monopoly, or the imposition of some vested 
interest. They represent the voluntary investment of a free people to ensure 
the sway of good will, the prevalence of wisdom, the satisfaction of those 
who, through equal opportimity, find work in service to their fellow-men, 
their countrv, and their God— to ensure, in other words, a better generation 
to succeed us, and a finer Canada. 



1. The attainment of the aims discussed in the previous chapter will 
mean a somewhat radical revision of our present system of education. We 
begin with a consideration of compulsory school attendance. This is far 
from being the most important question we have to consider, but, since 
school attendance determines the ages and number of children for whom 
we have to work out the details of our educational system, it may, in some 
sense at least, be regarded as fundamental. 

Extension of Compulsory School Attendance 

2. When schools were first established and maintained in Upper Canada, 
in part at least at public expense, attendance of pupils was voluntary', as 
in other countries. Once the principle of free schools^ had been accepted 
and had become generallv effective, however, the idea of compulsory' 
attendance at school came to the fore. It seems to have been based on a 
number of beliefs, constituting an unusual mixture of economic and 
humanitarian motives: that every child had a right to a common school 
education; that, in return for his financial support, the taxpayer might justly 
require that every child be educated; and that it was the duty of the parent 
to educate his child. As a result of these convictions, the School Law 
Improvement Act of 1871- included the following modest provision for 
compulsory attendance : 

3. Every child, from the age of .seven to twelve years inclusive, shall have the 
right to attend some school, or be otherwise educated for four months in each 
year; and any parent or guardian, who does not provide that each child between 
the ages aforesaid under his care shall attend some school, or be otherwise 
educated, as thus of right declared, shall be subject to the penalties hereinafter 
provided . . . 

3. It was not imtil 1881, however, that municipal assessors were required 
to register all children between the ages of 7 and 13, and school boards 

'Schools financed through revenue derived from local and provincial taxation without 
recourse to fees. 

-An Act to Improve the Common ami Grammar Schools of the Prov'mce of Ontario. 
•14 Vict., Ch. 33, S.O. 



empowered to appoint officers to enforce compulsory attendance. Some- 
what later, the length of the period of compulsory school attendance was 
extended to 100 days each year. But school boards failed to measure up 
to their responsibilit)'; and even as late as 1886, 23 per cent of the rural 
population within the compulsory school attendance age attended less 
than the required 100 days per year. To remedy this, the Truancy Act of 
1891^ was enacted. Full-time attendance for the school term was required 
of all children between the ages of 8 and 14; exceptions were allowed in 
cases of sickness or other unavoidable causes, or where the child was 
excused from attendance by the school principal or a justice of the peace, 
or where he had passed the high school entrance examination; and penalties 
were provided, applying to parents and guardians who refused to comply, 
and to any person who, during the school term, employed a child under 
the age of 14. Although this legislation brought about a marked improve- 
ment in school attendance, the Act was not fully enforced, particularly in 
rural areas. Hence, in 1919, The School Attendance Act- and The Adolescent 
School Attendance Act^ were enacted. They required tlie appointment of 
local attendance officers, whose work was to be supervised and co-ordinated 
by a provincial attendance officer. The general provisions of this legislation 
are still in effect. 

4. Today, The School Attendance Act requires that every child between 
the ages of 8 and 14 attend school for the full term, and responsibility for 
such attendance is placed on the parent or guardian. General exemptions 
are provided in cases of sickness or other unavoidable causes, excessive dis- 
tance from school, insufficient accommodation, and where children are 
receiving efficient instruction elsewhere, or have passed examinations 
equivalent to university matriculation or entrance to normal school. Ever) 
child between the ages of 5 and 8 who has been registered as a pupil must 
attend at least during the term in which he is enrolled. Provision is made 
that a child under the age of 14 be not employed during school hours, except 
in case of urgent necessity as certffied by a school attendance officer, and 
then for not longer than six weeks during the school term. 

5. The present Adolescent School Attendance Act requires the full-time 
attendance of every adolescent between 14 and 16 years of age; and, in 
municipalities where part-time courses are provided, it requires part-time 
attendance, for at least 320 hours per year, of those between 16 and 18 years 
of age. Unfortunately, an extensive and complicated set of exemptions and 
exceptions largely nullifies these requirements. An adolescent between 14 
and 16 years of age is exempted from attendance 

(a) if unable to attend because of sickness, infirmity, or other physical 

'An Act Respecting Truanct/ and Cunijitilsory School Attendance, 54 Vict., Ch. 56, 

''The School Attendance Act, 9 Geo. V, Ch. 77, S.O. 

"The Adolescent School Attendance Act, 9 Geo. V, Ch. 78. S.O. 


(b) if employed on the authority of a home permit or an employment 

(c) if he has passed the university matriculation examination, or its 

(d) if in attendance at some other educational institution approved by 
the Minister; or 

(e) if his parent or guardian resides in a niral school section, and his 
services are required in the household, or on the farm. 

Adolescents between the ages of 14 and 16 who hold home permits or em- 
plo\Tnent certificates are required to attend part-time courses for at least 
400 hours each year, but only when such courses are established in the 
municipality in which they are employed. 

6. An adolescent between the ages of 16 and 18 is exempted from at- 
tendance at part-time courses 

(a) if such part-time courses are not provided in the municipality in 
which he resides or is employed; 

(b) if unable to attend by reason of illness, infirmity, or other physical 

(c) if he has passed the imiversity matriculation examination, or its 

(d) if in attendance at a school under the jurisdiction of the Depart- 
ment of Education, or other school approved by the Minister; or 

(e) if he has been under full-time instruction up to age 16. 

7. Three specific criticisms relating to the period of compulsory school 
attendance in Ontario have been submitted in evidence placed before us: 

( 1 ) It is claimed that with modem road conditions and transportation 
facilities there is no sound reason why the beginning age for the period 
of compulsory attendance should not be lowered. 

(2) The period of compulsory school attendance terminates at age 16, at 
which time the average child has partly completed the second stage 
of education. Thus, the end of the period of compulsory school atten- 
dance fails to coincide with a terminal point in the educational pro- 

(3) Owing to the general use of home permits and employment certificates, 
the upper limit of the period of compulsory attendance is, in eflFect. 
lowered for many children by one or two years. 

8. Are these criticisms valid? There can be no doubt that, in many coun- 
tries, particularly since the beginning of the twentieth century, the extension 
of the period of compulsory school attendance has been rapid. In England, 
for example, age limits of 5 to 15 years, with provision for an increase to age 
16, were established by the Education Act, 1944;^ in France, an upper age 
limit of 18 has been recommended. In the United States, compulsory atten- 

^An Act to Reform tJie Late Relating to Education in England and Wales, 7 & 8 
Geo. VI, Ch. 31, S.U.K. 


dance is enforced to age 14 in three states, to 15 in one, to 16 in thirty- three, 
to 17 in six, and to 18 in the remaining five states, but the attitude is de- 
veloping that such yariations in compulsory school attendance are no longer 
justified. In the provinces of Canada other than Ontario there is a variation 
in the upper age limit of compulsor)' school attendance; but, in general, in 
rural areas it is 14, and in urban centres 16. 

9. Attendance of our children at school is so much a part of our culture 
and tradition that we tend to accept it without question. Yet the reasons 
for it are important. As society became more and more complex, a point 
was reached where the training secured in the home and through practical 
experience was not sufficient. The information and skills to be acquired 
demanded a more formal type of instruction which could be given better in 
schools. With changes in pohtical organization, such as universal adult 
suffrage, it became imperative in the interests of society that all citizens 
possess an essential minimum of education. In pioneer days mere hteracy 
would suflBce; but today we live in a highly industrialized province with a 
complex social organization, in which, if citizens are properly to discharge 
their duties and responsibihties, a high level of general education for all 
must be maintained. 

10. The reason for the introduction of compulsory school attendance 
was not only that it served the welfare of society. It is a moot point whether 
consideration of the welfare of society or of the child was more important 
in bringing it about. Certainly, the immediate motive in the associated laws 
relating to child labour and school attendance has been child welfare: 
employment at too early an age endangers physical welfare; non-attendance 
at school endangers educational welfare. In any case, for either or both 
reasons, compulsor)' school attendance is firmly supported by public opinion 
in our province. 

11. The length of the schooling period merits careful consideration. If 
a high level of general education is to be maintained, formal schooling must 
extend over a comparatively long period. Yet, if the period is unduly pro- 
longed, it is quite possible that students, and particularly gifted students, 
may spend too many of their most productive years in school. This may 
not be in their best interests or in those of society. 

12. Two recent developments also affect the problem. The payment of 
family allowances on behalf of children under 16 years of age, conditional 
upon attendance at school, has resulted in greater regularity of attendance, 
and has made possible attendance for a longer period. On the other hand, 
the high cost of living after the Second World War and the burden of in- 
come and other taxes have tended to reduce the number of years during 
which some children may remain financially dependent and enjoy education 
at higher levels. Others have been tempted from school by the high level 
of wages. 



13. How long, then, should the period of compulsory attendance be? 
From the point of view of the child's welfare and development, the answer 
appears to be that it should extend from approximately age 6 to about age 
16. It is generally agreed that formal instruction in school, more particularly 
in the fundamental skills of reading, writing, and arithmetic, cannot advan- 
tageously be introduced, for the great majority of children, before age 6. 
At the other end of the scale, the child achieves physiological maturity about 
age 16; he desires, under normal circumstances, to secure gainful employ- 
ment; and he may do so without endangering his physical welfare. More- 
over, although the evidence is conflicting, it seems probable that his mental 
abilit)' closely approaches its maximum growth at about that age. 

14. From the point of view of the community, the purpose of compulsory 
school attendance is to ensure a minimum standard of education for all 
citizens. It follows that the educational system should be organized so that, 
during the period of compulsory school attendance, aU children may secure 
a well rounded general education, suited to their var)'ing capacities. In our 
opinion, the minimum educational standard must be sufficiently hi^h to 
ensure at least 

( a ) competence in oral and wTitten English, and an appreciation of our 
language, life, and culture; 

( h ) competence in the fundamentals of mathematics; 

(c) a knowledge of science and social studies adequate for an under- 
standing of our society; 

{d) a habit of clear, objective, and critical thought; 

{e) a knowledge of those ideals of conduct which our society approves 
and which are based upon the fundamental truths of religion; and 

(/) exploration of various vocational fields in which employment may 
be later secured. 

15. The essential minimum standard of education required of all citizens 
cannot, we conclude, be secured in less than ten years. Beginning at age 6, 
the period of compulsory school attendance would thus end at age 16. Many- 
will claim that this period is too short;' but we feel that in the existing 
state of our national economy we cannot at the present time afford to com- 
pel all our youth to remain in school after age 16, It is estimated that if the 
compulsory school attendance age were raised to 18 the total annual cost of 
education in Ontario, not including the cost to parents of supporting their 

'The conclusion that a longer period of compulsory school attendance is required 
has been strongly supported in briefs submitted by: The Ontario Agricultural Com- 
mission of Inquiry- (Brief 1); The Rural Section of the Ontario School Trustees' and 
Ratepayers' Association, Ontario Educational Association (Brief 12); United Electrical, 
Radio and Machine Workers of America, C.I.O., District Five Council (Brief 43); The 
Ontario Provincial Executive and the Executive of the Trades and Labour Congress of 
Canada (Brief 154); and the Educational Committee of the Ontario Federation of 
Agriculture (Brief 211). 


children, would be increased by at least $15,000,000. Nor are we convinced 
that it would be in the best interests of many young persons to keep them in 
school until this age: they are ready to enter employment; they desire to 
do so; they may not have the ability to profit from the specialized training 
which should be given at this stage; and it is doubtful if they would profit 
appreciably from a forced continuation of general education. 
16. We recommend 

(a) that the period of compulsory full-time school attendance begin for 
each child on September 1st of the calendar year in which he attains 
the age of 6 years; 

(b) that for each child, subject to the exemptions hereinafter provided, 
the period of compulsory full-time school attendance extend to June 
30th of the calendar year during which he attains the age of 16 

Although the requirements of compulsory full-time school attendance should 
apply to all children, exemptions must be permitted in exceptional circum- 
stances. Therefore, we recommend 

that the requirements for compulsory ftdl-time school attendance be not 
applicable to any child 

(i) if he is physically unfit, as certified by a duly qualified medical 

( ii ) if he is ineducable, as certified by an authority designated by the 

Minister of Education; 
(iii) if he resides more than a specified distance from the nearest 
school which he has the right to attend and no school transpor- 
tation or other service in lieu thereof is provided; 
(iv) if he is tmder instruction deemed to be efficient and adequate by 

the Minister of Education; or 
(v) if he has obtained the Secondary School Graduation Diploma, as 
hereinafter defined. 
We recommend also 

(a) that it continue to be the duty of the parent or guardian of each 
child whose age falls within the period of compulsory full-time 
school attendance, and who has not been exempted, to have such 
child attend school; 

( b ) that a parent or guardian who neglects or refuses to cause such child 
to attend school as required incur a specified penalty for non-com- 

(c) tJiat legislation be enacted to prohibit employment of any child who 
is, or should be, enrolled in full-time attendance in a school, except 
before or after school hours or when school is not in session, and 
then only in such activities as will not be prejudicial to his health 
or otherwise render him unfit to obtain the full benefit of the edu- 
cation provided for him. 


17. Establishing the Hmits of the period of compulsory school attendance 
at ages 6 and 16 will inevitably bring about an increased enrolment. In 
elementarv schools the present shortage of teachers may be aggravated; in 
secondary schools tlie need for additional teachers and accommodation will 
have to be satisfied. The evidence we have received, particularly with refer- 
ence to rural schools,^ leads us to believe that our people earnestly desire 
that adequate educational facilities, in both elementary and secondary 
schools, should be made available to rural and urban children alike. We 
realize, however, that major changes in organization, desirable and urgent 
though they may be, cannot immediately and fully be eflFected in all areas. 
We therefore recommend 

that, for a limited period imTnediately following the enactment of legis- 
lation lengthening the period of compulsory school attendance, and sub- 
ject to the permission of the Minister, a local education authority be 
authorized to defer, on an annual basis, the application of the regulations 
relating to the compulsory school attendance of children of ages 6, 7, 
14, and 15. 

Pro\ision of Stages Within the Educational System 

18. The division of the educational system into stages seems to be desir- 
able. In Upper Canada the early common and grammar schools were 
originally established to meet specific needs, and little thought was given 
to their systematic organization in relation to each other. There was only 
slow progress in the direction of a unified system divided into stages which 
would avoid overlapping in ages and available services. In the latter half 
of the nineteenth century, however, a pattern began to take shape. Ele- 
mentary schools, in which were included public and separate schools, be- 
came the first stage in the educational system; and secondary schools, con- 
sisting of high schools and collegiate institutes, became the second stage. 
The number of years of formal education offered in each stage varied from 
time to time; but the common practice came to be an eight-year programme 
for the first stage, and a five-year programme for the second. 

19. Our present elementary school system departs from an eight-year 
programme in two directions. In the first place, boards of trustees may 
operate kindergartens for 3-, 4-, and 5-year-old children. In the second 
place, work of grades IX and X may be provided in the elementary school 
panel although, where such is the case, the secondary school programme of 
studies is followed. There is a tendency toward a division or "break" in the 
elementary school programme^ at the end of grade VI. In fact, "Senior Pub- 

'See, in particular, Brief 1 submitted by the Ontario Agricultural Commission of 
Inquiry, and Brief 211 submitted by the Educational Committee of the Ontario Federa- 
tion of Agriculture. 

"The programme of studies for elementary schools is published in three booklets: 
Programme for Junior and Senior Kindergarten and Kindergarten Primary Classes of 
the Public and Separate Schools; Programme of Studies for Grades I to VI of the Public 
and Separate Schools; and Programme of Studies for Grades VII and VIII of the Public 
and Separate Schools. 


lie Schools" for pupils in grades VII and VIII have been established in some 
urban centres. The secondary school programme also has divisions. Grades 
IX and X lead to the Intermediate Certificate; grades IX to XII inclusive, 
as a unit, lead to the Secondary School Graduation Diploma; and grade 
XIII leads to the Secondary School Honour Graduation Diploma. 

20. The following criticisms, in particular, have directed our attention 
to the need for revision in tlie organization of the stages of our educational 

( 1 ) The period of time required to complete the elementary and secondar)' 
school programme is unnecessarily long. This condition has been ag- 
gravated by the frequent addition of content, which has resulted from 
the inclusion of new subjects without deletion of subject matter in 
existing courses; by the adoption of teaching methods which are more 
time-consuming than the old; by the repetition of the content of courses 
in successive grades; and by the practice of extending the work of 
grade XIII over two years, or that of grades XII and XIII over three 

(2) The division between the two stages of the educational organization 
occurs at the end of grade VIII, when pupils are about age 14. This 
break comes almost exactly in the middle of the period of early adol- 
escence, though it should immediately precede this important stage in 
child development. 

(3) The inclusion, in some centres, of the secondary school courses of 
studies for grades IX and X in the elementary school panel tends to 
weaken the coherence of the general programme. 

(4) Integration of the stages of the system is needed. At present the con- 
nection between elementary and secondary education is tenuous. Tra- 
ditionally, secondary education has been associated with higher edu- 
cation and elementary education has been a self-contained and terminal 
unit for a large number of pupils. 

21. In order to help in the evaluation of these criticisms, a special study 
of educational organization in other countries was made. It was found that 
in Great Britain, France, South Africa, and New Zealand, and in almost all 
states and other provinces on this continent, the trend was in the direction 
of a classification of elementary and secondary education into three or more 
divisions, roughly corresponding to the major stages of child development. 
In those countries or areas where a reorganization has been effected, the 
pattern has been somewhat as follows: 

Stage Length 

Nursery and Kindergarten One to three years 

Primary Six years 

Junior Secondary Three or four years 
Senior Secondary, or Senior Secondary 

and Junior College Three or four years 


Evidence placed before us indicates that reorganization along these lines 
has proved to be sound. 

22. In our own province a similar trend seems to be developing. The 
organization which is taking shape is as follows: 

Level Ages Grades 

j Junior Kindergarten 

j Three to six I Senior Kindergarten 

Junior Elementary [Kindergarten-Primary 

[SLx to twelve Grades I to VI, inclusive 

Senior Elementary Twelve to fourteen Grades VII and VIII 

Junior Secondary Fourteen to sixteen Grades IX and X 

Senior Secondary Sixteen to eighteen Grades XI and XII 

Advanced Secondary Eighteen to nineteen Grade XIII 

(Eighteen to twenty) 

The stages of child development which lie behind the lines of division here 
suggested are of paramount importance and must be examined in consider- 
able detail. 

Stages in Child Development 

23. In a process of growth, one stage often passes gradually and imper- 
ceptibly into the next. In children, no period of growth can be sharply dis- 
tinguished from that which precedes or from that which follows. But stages 
are recognizable; and each has needs peculiar to it. They follow one another, 
for the most part, in a sequence which is common to all individuals. But, 
while the pattern of growth tends to be similar in all children, there may 
be important variations, and the rate of growth may differ considerably. A 
child may be normal or average in physical development, advanced in 
mental, and retarded in social development; but he is not likely to be highly 
advanced in one aspect of development and markedly retarded in another. 
The units or divisions of an educational system cannot be categorically de- 
fined in terms of development. They will not fit all children nor all the 
phases of development of a particular child; but they will in general cor- 
respond; and it is possible to establish units or stages in accordance with 
the periods of child development. 

24. Until he is 3 years of age the child is an infant, almost wholly 
dependent on others to satisfy his needs. From age 3 he becomes increas- 
ingly self-dependent. At age 4 he becomes nearly independent in certain 
routines of home life. At age 5, having completed one phase of develop- 
ment, he is on the threshold of childhood. However, for reasons associated 
with sensory-motor development, and because of a lack of manual co- 
ordination and conceptual development, he is not ready to learn to read 
and write. 

25. The 6-year-old child is ready to begin elementary school, with 
its formal instruction in the basic skills of reading, writing, and arithmetic. 


The period from 6 to 8, or 8-plus years, is one of steady growth in all 
aspects of development; during these years the child learns the elementary 
facts of our culture, mainly through the concrete rather than the abstract, 
through the present and the familiar. It is a period when he learns to know 
the immediate environment; when he lays the foundations of that inde- 
pendence, based on such knowledge, which is characteristic of the period 
between 8 years and adolescence. The period from 8 to 12 or 12-plus years 
seems to be a separate stage in development. The child seems to be a com- 
pleted product, desiring the prerogatives of an adult: with others of his own 
age he organizes clubs and gangs; he shows an intensification of the spirit 
of competition; and he acquires a large degree of independence of parental 
and other adult influences. His interests extend beyond the present and 
familiar; he can think in terms of the abstract; and can grasp ideas of 
human relationships and of people of other lands and times. But he is not 
yet an adult; he is in the period of relative calm that precedes the onset 
of puberty. 

26. The period of adolescence is marked by profound physical and 
emotional changes. These are related; the most fundamental are the outcome 
of the maturing of the sex functions which is often a source of consider- 
able embarrassment and self-consciousness, and perhaps a source of shame 
or even fear where the child has not been properly informed. Adolescents 
often experience a spurt in physical growth. The resulting lack of balance 
in bodily proportions tends to upset many of the established motor co- 
ordinations, with the consequence that the early adolescent passes through 
an awkward age, when he is constantly tripping over his own feet. In later 
adolescence, the body assumes its approximate adult proportions and the 
motor co-ordination of the adult is achieved. Adolescence is also an impor- 
tant period in the child's emotional development and social outlook; the 
changes in behaviour patterns and emotional attitudes are as great as 
the physical changes. There is an expansion in social interests, more par- 
ticularly with regard to persons of the opposite sex. All his life the child 
has been growing and developing toward independence, but during 
adolescence the process is accelerated and, in most cases, almost completed. 

27. Adolescence is not something which arrives over night. With all 
the attendant physical and psychological changes, it represents a stage in 
development embracing a considerable period of time. Nor are all aspects 
of the development completed at the same time. It is probable that mental 
ability, although it has closely approached its maximum by age 16, con- 
tinues to grow into the late teens or early twenties, long after physical 
maturit)^ has been reached, although the growth becomes smaller year by 
year. In any case, the period of development which begins with the onset of 
puberty and ends with the attainment of physical maturity is one of pro- 
found changes, and one which presents problems radically different from 
those of the periods which precede and follow it. Except for very atypical 


cases, the age of reaching puberty ranges for girls from about 10 to about 18, 
and for boys from about 12 to about 18, although the evidence available^ is 
not all consistent. However, in any large group of pupils the range of ages of 
attaining puberty will be, for the majority, from 12 to 16. 

28. In the light of these facts, the following stages of development are 
generally accepted as those to which the organization of an educational 
system should conform: 

Stage Ages 

1. Early Infancy Up to three years 

2. Late Infancy Three to five years 

3. Early Childhood Five or six to eight years 

4. Late Childhood (Pre-adolescence) Eight or nine to twelve years 

5. Early Adolescence Twelve to sixteen years 

6. Late Adolescence or Young Adulthood Sixteen to nineteen or twenty years 

Proposed Stages of the Educational System 

29. The period of compulsory full-time school attendance determines the 
limits for the organization of the stages in the educational system. The 
provision of suitable education for children aged 6 to 16 must be the pri- 
mary responsibility of local education authorities. But in nearly all countries, 
states, and provinces, including Ontario, provision has been made for formal 
education both before and after the period of compulsory school atten- 

30. An increasing interest in the education of very young children has 
resulted, in recent years, in the organization of classes for 4-year-old 
children in two of our larger cities. These were established under authority 
of The Public Schools Act; attendance is on a half-day basis and is not com- 
pulsory; and the parents may be required to pay fees. It is generally 
accepted that the education of children of this age in school can yield bene- 
ficial results, more particularly in social adjustment, though some people 
continue to believe that such education is a responsibility of the home. 
Kindergartens for 5-year-old children have, on the other hand, been in 
operation for many years. Their success in meeting the educational needs 
of these children has been convincingly demonstrated. Not the least of 
their successes has been in assisting children to adjust themselves to the 
routines and procedures of the classroom after the freedom of the home. 

31. In the years following the period of compulsory school attendance, 
there is a need for an educational programme of specialized training as a 
preparation for the professions, industry, commerce, home-making, and 
agriculture. It is now conceded by a majority of our people that every child 
has the right to receive such training if he is able to profit from it. 

32. We are concerned here with the division into stages of this whole 
educational programme. Any such division is somewhat artificial and tends 

^See, for example, Louella Cole, Psychology of Adolescence, New York: Farrar and 
Rinehart, 1936. 


to create barriers, but it is necessary, and the parts can be united through 
proper articulation. Within a unified educational system, it is imperative 
that one stage lead progressively and naturally to the next; secure bridges 
must be constructed between successive stages to facilitate passage from 
one to anotlier. In other words, to conform with the principles of child 
development no abrupt changes should occur. Progress from one recogniz- 
able stage to the next should be a matter of continuous growth. For each 
child, according to his abilities, a single unified system should exist, extend- 
ing from the time of his admission to school until his graduation. 

33. We have based our recommendations as to the reorganization of the 
educational system into stages on the following principles: 

( 1 ) The stages of the educational system should correspond as closely as 
possible to those of child development. 

(2) Entrance to the first stage of the educational system should coincide 
with the beginning of compulsory school attendance.^ 

(3) The completion of the programme of one stage of the educational 
system should coincide with the termination of compulsory school 

In addition, two considerations regarding the boundaries of these stages 
are vastly important: 

(1) In view of the physical and psychological changes which occur wdth 
the onset of puberty, the educational system must be so organized that 
all children can complete one stage of education and begin another 
at about age 12. 

(2) At present, the educational programme extends over 13 grades and. 
in our opinion, is unnecessarily long. Accordingly, in the suggested 
reorganization of the curricula and courses of study, we have arranged 
to permit its completion, in normal circumstances, in 11 or 12 years. 
This period is exclusive of the time which may be spent in nursery 
school and kindergarten, and of an additional course of one year 
equivalent to the first year of universit)' work to be offered in what 
we have called junior colleges. We believe that this reduction of the 
general programme can be secured without prejudice to the welfare 
of the students, and with an appreciable saving in time and money. 

34. We therefore recommend 

that the educational system be organized in three stages, as follows: 
(i) ELEMENTARY EDUCATION, comprising nursery schools and 
kindergartens where established, together with a six-grade pro- 
gramme ending at about age 12; 
(ii) SECONDARY EDUCATION, comprising a four-grade pro- 
gramme, ending at about age 16; 

'Nursery schools and kindergartens are not included here as local education au- 
thorities are not required to establish them. 


(iii) FURTHER EDUCATION, comprising all post-secondary edu- 
cation to he offered in junior colleges and technical institutes, as 
well as apprenticeship training and part-time education. 

Provision of Educational Facilities 
a. elementary education 

( 1 ) Nursery Schools and Classes 

35. Nursery schools and classes, where established, are normally for 
3-year-old and 4-year-old children. Desirable as the general provision of 
these facilities may be, the very high per pupil cost of education at this 
level is an important consideration. Because of this, and since the primar)' 
financial responsibility is to provide an adequate educational programme 
during the period of compulsory' school attendance, we cannot recommend 
that nursery schools be made generally available. On the other hand, if local 
education authorities have discharged their primary responsibility, they 
should, in our opinion, be encouraged to provide educational facilities for 
younger children. But, since attendance at such classes will not be com- 
pulsory, and hence not all areas will make provision for them, legislative 
grants should not be paid on behalf of expenditures incurred in their 

36. We therefore recommend 

(a) that, conditional upon maintenance of a required minimum stand- 
ard of education in grades I to Vl inclusive, as determined by the 
Minister, local education authorities he permitted to establish 
nursery schools and classes for 3-year-old and 4-year-old children; 

(h) that attendance at such schools or classes he voluntary and on a 
half-day hasis; 

(c) that the full cost of the establishment and operation of such schools 
or classes be a responsibility of the local education authority; 

(d) that, for pupils attending such classes, local education authorities 
be authorized to charge such fees as they may deem necessary. 

Nursery schools must, of necessity, be neighbourhood schools; transpor- 
tation of 3- and 4-year-old pupils is, generally speaking, neither advisable 
nor desirable. They should be housed separately, or at least in a separate 

(2) Kindergartens 

37. In discussing kindergartens, we are concerned with the education 
of 5-year-old children, whom we have, for convenience, considered as a 
distinct group. There can be no doubt that kindergarten training serves a 
most useful purpose in supplementing home training, in assisting the child 
in the transition from home to school life, and that it helps progress and 


achievement throughout the regular grades. We are convinced of the 
value of kindergarten programmes for 5-year-old children, and believe that 
they should be more generally available. But the cost of making general 
provision for them, combined with other attendant difficulties, makes the 
undertaking almost impracticable. It would add many millions of dollars 
to our annual cost of education. Most local education authorities in the 
province could probably not afford to finance a full programme of kinder- 
garten education in addition to their primary responsibilities. But the estab- 
lishment of kindergartens for 5-year-old children should be encouraged, 
and local authorities should be permitted to provide these educational 

38. Accordingly we recommend 

(a) that, conditional upon the maintenance of a required minimum 
standard of education in grades I to VI inclusive, as determined by 
the Minister, education authorities be permitted to establish kinder- 
garten classes for 5-ijear-old children; 

(b) that attendance at kindergarten classes be voluntary and on a 
half-day basis; 

(c) that general legislative grants be paid on the approved cost of 
operating kindergarten classes; 

(d) that, for pupils attending kindergarten classes, local education 
authorities be authorized to charge such fees as they may deem 

In consideration of the immaturity of the pupils concerned, their trans- 
portation over long distances is inadvisable. They should be housed in 
readily accessible neighbourhood schools, preferably in a department dis- 
tinct from other rooms of the elementary school if not in a separate building. 

(3) Elementary School {grades I to VI inclusive) 

39. Since all pupils in the elementary school will be within the ages of 
compulsory school attendance, local education authorities will be required 
to make adequate provision for their education, and expenditures will be 
subject to general legislative grants. 

40. At the elementary school stage, adequate housing facilities sepa- 
rate from secondary schools should be provided. Elementary schools will 
generally be neighbourhood schools, and there will be little need for trans- 
portation. In certain rural areas, however, an organized system for the 
transportation of elementary school pupils may be arranged, either in con- 
junction with, or separate from, that for secondary school pupils. 

41. The reorganization of elementary education will be the source of 
no particular difficulty in urban centres. It will mean the continuance of 
neighbourhood schools of varying sizes within reasonable walking distance 
for pupils. Some difficulty may arise, however, in sparsely populated rural 
areas. Here, graded central schools may be established, or alternatively. 


one-room schools mav be continued. At present, the trend is toward the 
development of central schools, a trend which may well be accentuated in 
the new larger units of administration which we later recommend. It will 
be particularly rapid, according to experience in this province and else- 
where, where local conditions are favourable. But geographical conditions 
and the cost of central schools will, in all likelihood, make the continuance 
of the one-room rural school necessary in many parts of the province. 
This fact makes it imperative that many such schools be improved. There 
is no good reason why they cannot serve efficiently as rural neighbour- 
hood elementary schools drawing their pupils from a relatively small area, 
especially where their field of activity is limited to the education of those 
who are under 12 years of age. 

42. We therefore recommend 

(a) that local education authorities be required to establish and operate 
six-grade elementary schools for the education of all children 
legally entitled to attend, who are between the ages of 6 and 12 
years, as hereinbefore defined, and who are not otherwise ex- 
empted from attendance at such schools or otherwise under in- 
struction satisfactory to the Minister; 

(b) that attendance at such schools be on a full-day basis; 

(c) that general legislative grants be paid on the approved cost of 
operating such schools; 

(d) that local education authorities be not permitted to charge fees on 
behalf of children entitled to attend such schools under their 

43. We have been informed that, in some areas, the custom has been to 
admit beginners to elementary schools at various specified times within the 
school year. In our opinion, the practice of enrolling such pupils at any 
time other than the opening of the autumn term is educationally unsound 
and should be discouraged. Accordingly we recommend 

that beginners be admitted to elementary schools only at the opening of 
the autumn term} 


44. Since students in secondary schools will be within the range of com- 
pulsory school attendance, local education authorities will be required to 
make adequate provision for all children entitled to attend. And, subject to 
the requirements of the Department of Education being satisfied, general 
legislative grants should be paid on the approved cost of operating. 

45. In view of their diversified programmes, the secondary schools 
will need to be specially equipped and the cost will be relatively high. 
But the equipment need not be as specialized and expensive as that of our 
present vocational schools, and the cost per pupil should be substantially 

'See also paragraph 16 of this chapter. 


less. The introduction of the new secondary schools should not add much, 
if anything, to the total cost of education, except for the additional cost 
consequent upon the enforcement of compulsory school attendance to age 
16. In larger urban centres total enrolment will not be greatly increased 
and existing buildings may be utilized. Rural and newer suburban areas, 
however, where there is a lack of facilities for secondary education, will feel 
the full impact of the enforcement of compulsory school attendance to 
age 16. It will be difficult, especially in rural areas, to provide the necessary 
teachers and accommodation, but we are convinced the change should be 
made. The provision of transportation facilities, and residential facilities 
where necessary, will also prove to be a problem in many parts of our 
province; but similar diflBculties have been overcome where they have 
arisen in Ontario and other provinces of Canada and in the United States, 
and they should not prove to be insurmountable. 

46. We therefore recommend 

(a) that local education authorities he required to establish and operate 
four-grade secondary schools for the education of all children 
legally entitled to attend, who are between the ages of 12 and 16 
years, as hereinbefore defined, and who are not otherwise ex- 
empted from attendance or otherwise under instruction deemed 
satisfactory to the Minister; 

(b) that attendance at secondary schools be on a full-day basis; 

(c) that general legislative grants be paid on the approved cost of oper- 
ating such schools; 

(d) that local education authorities be not permitted to charge fees on 
behalf of children entitled to attend secondary schools under their 


47. The specialized training we contemplate for further education can- 
not all be given, as in the secondary school stage, in a single type of school. 
We suggest, therefore, that further education be provided in two types of 
schools, which we propose be called junior colleges and technical institutes, 
and through an extension of apprenticeship training and part-time education. 

( 1 ) Junior Colleges 

48. Junior colleges will be a responsibility of the local education authori- 
ties for post-elementary education, and it will be the duty of the board to 
provide programmes and sufficient accommodation for all students who 
are entitled to attend and who desire to do so. We are aware that edu- 
cation at this level will be costly, but we feel that junior colleges should be 
an integral part of our publicly supported system of education. Subject to 
the requirements of the Department of Education being satisfied, general 
legislative grants should be paid on the approved costs of operating. 


49. The general pattern to be followed under the reorganized system 
will be a 6-4-3 plan, that is, six grades of elementary education followed 
bv four (grades of secondary and bs' three grades of junior college. The pro- 
gramme should be designed to provide a standard at the end of the second 
year of junior college equivalent to successful completion of the present 
grade XIII (upper school), and equivalent at the end of the third year of 
junior college to entrance to second year courses in Arts at the University 
of Toronto. Under present circumstances it will not be practicable in some 
predominantly rural areas to provide more than two-year courses in junior 
colleges. Also, in some centres where universities are located, and where 
the equivalent of the final year of junior college is provided by the uni- 
versits-, the local education authorit)' may not provide the courses of the 
third year of junior college. 

50. In larger urban centres and in other densely populated areas, such 
as suburban municipalities, the system can, as it should, be completely 
organized on the 6-4-3 plan we have recommended. Secondary schools 
and junior colleges should, of course, be housed in different buildings. 
However, in small urban centres with their surrounding rural territory, 
and and in predominantly rural areas, such an arrangement may not be 
feasible since the population will be widely dispersed and transportation 
difficult. Because of limitations in what is economically and physically pos- 
sible, it may be necessar)' to establish junior college departments in con- 
nection with a number of secondary schools, rather than a central junior 
college for the whole area. These junior college departments will generally 
offer only the two-year uni\ ersity-preparator)' and vocational courses. In 
these areas, at least in the beginning, the system will probably be organized 
on the 6-4-2 plan. But there will normally be an urban centre, near the 
rural area, which has established a complete 6-4-3 plan, where the courses 
of the third year of junior college may be taken. Although it is regrettable 
that a partial plan should be instituted, even locally, it must be remem- 
bered that the less densely populated areas, such as exist in Northern 
Ontario, will always have their special educational problems. They will 
benefit more than appears at first sight from the proposed plan. 

51. Accordingly we recommend 

(a) that local education authorities he required to establish and oper- 
ate junior colleges, or junior college departments in conjunction 
with secondary schools, providing two-year university-preparatory 
and vocational courses, and, where the need is demonstrated and 
it is physically and economically possible so to do, three-year uni- 
versity -preparatory courses, preferably in a junior college operated 
as a distinct unit, for all students resident in their areas who have 
qualified for entrance and desire to attend; 

(b) that attendance at junior colleges be voluntary and on a full-day 


(c) that general legislative grants be paid on the approved costs of oper- 
ating such junior colleges and junior college departments} 

(2) Provincial Technical Institutes and Apprenticeship Training 

(a) Provincial Technical Institutes 

52. A technical training is required in some industries or industrial 
fields more specialized than that ofFered in vocational courses in junior 
colleges, and designed specifically to prepare individuals for particular 
skilled trades and semi-professional positions. This cannot be given in 
junior colleges, though the vocational courses in junior college will in a 
sense be preparatory to it. We therefore propose that provincial technical 
institutes be established, to be associated with specific industries or indus- 
trial fields. Where an institute is associated with a number of industries, 
such as the present Ryerson Institute of Technology, we suggest that it be 
known as a polytechnical institute. 

53. The organization of this type of education presents special prob- 
lems. Some students will enter a technical institute immediately after com- 
pleting a two- or three-year junior college course; others will be youths 
and adults entering for varying lengths of time after a period of employ- 
ment. They will attend part-time day or evening courses or full-time dav 
courses. The students will vary in interests, needs, age, work experience, 
abilities, and aptitudes, as well as in educational achievement. A great 
variety of courses will therefore be required, from short, intensive "re- 
fresher" and "up-grading" courses, probably mainly part-time day and 
evening courses, to specialized courses in technical subjects. These last, 
designed for the training of skilled technicians for various industries and 
trades, will, in many cases, require full-time attendance for at least two 
years. A major problem in this field will be to secure co-ordination and 
integration of the eflForts of all concerned with the administration of techni- 
cal institutes, such as industr)', organized labour, and departments of 

54. We do not suggest the abolition or duplication of existing facilities, 
including those of apprenticeship training and those available at the pre- 
sent provincial technical institutes. We propose rather that such facilities 
be expanded, supplemented, and co-ordinated. Technical institutes and 
universities will operate in different fields; it is not intended that the 
courses described above should parallel, or supplant, the function of the 
universities in applied science. 

(b) Apprenticeship Training 

55. Special arrangements will have to be made for training artisans ■ 
required for skilled trades other than those served by technical institutes, fl 
Although much has been done in this field, no comprehensive programme 

'Payment of fees in junior colleges is disc-nssed in paragraph 11 of Chapter XI. 



of trade training as yet exists in this province. There is evident need for 
trade schools and for an extension of the present programme of apprentice- 
ship training. Apprenticeship in industr)'^ and courses in technical or poly- 
technical institutes should be considered as complementary methods of 
providing trade training. Apprenticeship training will meet the needs of 
some trades. The training for some other trades may be given in institutes. 
For still other trades a combination of the two methods of training might 
produce the best results. 

56. It is impossible to outline here a complete programme of trade 
training. This will only become possible as the needs and demands of 
industry become evident and are expressed. Our main purpose is to en- 
courage its development. If the administrative machinery and the facilities 
now required are provided, the details of the programme can be most 
satisfactorily determined by those intimately associated with the trades. 
Industry and organized labour must express their desires and needs and 
show willingness to cooperate fully in the development of the programme. 

(c) Organization of Programmes of Technical 
Education and Trade Training 

57. In this organization, co-operation and co-ordination of eflFort by all 
parties must be secured at the provincial as well as at the local level. The 
Department of Education, and other departments of government such as 
Labour and Agriculture, should assist whole-heartedly and generously; but 
they should not directly initiate unless the need is shown and support from 
other interested parties is assured. The Department of Education would 
seem to be the logical co-ordinating agency. Its interest and responsibilities 
in this connection are more direct and general than those of other govern- 
ment departments. From the evidence received by us,^ and from our own 
investigations, it seems clear that the need for a common provincial policy 
and direction can be best met by establishing a provincial advisory com- 
mittee. This should be appointed by the Minister of Education, and should 
be composed of representatives of employers, of employees, and of the 
departments of government concerned. It should advise the Minister on 
all matters related to technical education affectins; both the Provincial and 
Federal Governments. In this way, all efforts and services in the whole field 
of technical education, vocational education, and trade training, mav be 
co-ordinated; and in many cases federal projects may be furthered through 
use of provincial facilities. 

58. Each technical institute, polytechnical institute, and division of ap- 
prenticeship training should be given full control, subject to the approval 
of the Minister of Education and to the conditions specified above, over 
its entrance requirements, admissions, examinations, promotions, and the 

'See, for example, Brief 152, Apprenticeship Training, submitted by the Provincial 
Advisory Committee for Building Trades. 


awarding of diplomas or certificates. In the local field, an advisory com- 
mittee appointed by the Minister of Education should have responsibilities 
for the school or schools concerned, corresponding to those of the provincial 
advisory committee. It should be composed of representatives of those who, 
like employers and employees, are directly affected. Its primary function 
should be to interpret to the staff of the school the requirements of the 
industry and trades which it serves, to secure a close liaison between the 
school and industry, and to assume responsibility for contributions and 
assistance from local groups and industries. The general direction and 
regulation of each institute and division of apprenticeship training should 
be by the Minister of Education upon the advice of local and provincial 
advisory committees. 

59. Local education authorities will not be required to provide facilities 
for vocational and technical education and trade training at this level; 
therefore, technical and polytechnical institutes and apprenticeship training 
will be financed in a manner differing from that adopted for the schools of 
the general educational system. Financial support may be secured from a 
number of sources, such as student fees, contributions from local groups and 
industries, and grants from the Federal Government; but as there is no local 
taxing authorit)', the ultimate financial responsibility must rest with the 
province. Education of this type will be very expensive. The cost of equip- 
ment alone will represent a considerable investment, and fees charged to 
students may well be substantial. The cost to the student will be increased 
owing to the fact that the institutions will be located so as best to serve 
the whole province, or the section of it concerned, and students will attend 
from all parts of the province as well as from other provinces and countries. 
In some cases, therefore, residential or boarding facilities will be required; 
in other cases, bursaries or scholarships or other forms of financial assistance 
to students will suffice. We anticipate, however, that financial aid to students, 
possibly in the form of part-time employment or through bursaries, will, in 
the main, be the responsibilitv of the industries and trades. 

60. We recommend 

(a) tJiat the Department of Education establish and operate, in co- 
operation with other agencies and groups concerned, technical and 
poll/technical institutes and divisions of apprenticeship training, 
where the need for such is demonstrated, and where the full support 
of the industries and trades concerned is secured; 

( h ) that provision he made for full-time day courses and part-time day 
and evenijig courses in such institutes, and that they be co-ordinated 
with programmes of apprenticeship training, where this is feasible 
and desirable; 

(c) that studc7its iti attendance at such courses be charged fees in such 
amount as may be deemed necessary; 


(d) that a provincial advisory committee, composed of representatives 
of employers, employees, and of the departments of government 
concerned, be appointed by the Minister of Education to advise him 
on matters related to technical education, trade training, and vo- 
cational education; 

(e) that, where needed, a local advisory committee for each technical 
and polytechnical institute and division of apprenticeship training 
be appointed by the Minister of Education, to advise him and the 
staff of the school upon the requirements of the industry and trades 
served, and to secure close liaison between the school and the 
industries concerned; 

(/) that each technical and polytechnical institute and division of ap- 
prenticeship training have full control, subject to the approval of 
the Minister of Education and to the conditions specified above, 
over its entrance requirements, admissions, examinations, pro- 
motions, and the awarding of certificates or diplomas. 

(3) Part-time Education 

61. At another point, we recommend that compulsory school attendance 
end on June 30th of the calendar year during which the pupil attains age 
16. We must make certain, though it will be difficult, that no person capable 
of profiting from further education is denied an opportunity only because 
he finds it necessary for financial reasons to discontinue his education at 
this point. A generous system of scholarships and bursaries, tenable beyond 
the period of compulsory school attendance, will care for those who are 
able to attend full-time day courses. But this will not meet the needs of all. 
Provision must also be made for part-time education in day and evening 
classes wherever there is need. Attendance would, of course, not normally 
be compulsory on a fuU-time basis, except in certain vocational courses 
which are part of apprenticeship training. Here, a period of full-time at- 
tendance may be stipulated as a part of the articles of apprenticeship. 

62. Provision is made in The Adolescent School Attendance Act for 
part-time compulsory education of all adolescents between ages 14 and 18 
who are not otherwise exempted. It is mandatory on the part of every urban 
municipality or school section with a population of 5,000 or over^ to provide 
part-time courses of instruction for the education of adolescents between 
such ages, and it is permissive on the part of any other municipality or 
school section. In representations made to us,- compulsory part-time edu- 
cation for all young persons from 16 to 18 years has been advocated. In 
point of fact, part-time instruction is now widely provided, but on a volun- 
tary attendance basis. In 1946-47, there were 1,747 vocational evening school 

'See Sec. 8, The Adolescent School Attendance Act, R.S.O. 1937, Ch. 368. 

"See, for example, Brief 43, submitted by District Five Coimcil, United Electrical and 
Machine Workers of America, C.I.O., and Brief 154, submitted by the Ontario Provincial 
Executive and the Executive of the Trades and Labour Congress of Canada. 


classes, employing 1,348 teachers and enrolling a total of 42,892 students; 
in addition, there were 105 academic night school classes, employing 108 
teachers and enrolling 2,527 students. The total cost of the evening and 
night school programmes of the secondary schools during the financial year 
1947 was $519,686, and receipts from fees were $140,744, or approximately 
27 per cent of the total cost. Moreover, these vocational and academic night 
school classes are well distributed over the province, in Northern as well 
as in Southern Ontario. So far as we can determine, the need for part-time 
education is almost fully met by such classes and by other part-time and 
special courses offered in vocational schools. 

63. In view of these facts, there is in our opinion no need to require 
compulsory part-time attendance; the needs can be fully met on a voluntary 
basis. Accordingly we recommend 

that there be no compulsory attendance at part-time day or evening 

classes for adolescents of ages 16 and 17. 
Nevertheless, provision of adequate facilities for part-time education is 
essential. Hence, not only should the present courses be continued, but 
additional facilities should be provided, where required, in both urban and 
rural areas. In our opinion, it should be the duty and responsibility of local 
education authorities to provide such facilities as part of the general system 
of education. This, together with the provisions we discuss later for adult 
education, will ensure that no person in this province who is capable of 
profiting from further education suitable to his needs, interests, and abilities 
is denied an adequate opportunity to continue his education. 

64. We therefore recommend 

(a) that, where the need is demonstrated and it is economically feasible 
so to do, local education authorities responsible for further edu- 
cation be required to provide part-time courses of instruction in 
day or night school classes, or in both, for persons of ages 16 and 17; 

(b) that local education authorities responsible for further education 
be permitted to provide part-time courses of instruction in day or 
in night school classes, or in both, for persons of ages 18 and over; 

(c) that attendance at any such classes for part-time instruction be 

(d) that general legislative grants be paid on the approved cost of 
operating all such classes for part-time instruction; 

(e) that, for port-time education, local education authorities be author- 
ized to charge such fees as they may deem necessary. 

The Reorganized Educational System 

65. On the following page is shown in diagrammatic form the flow of 
students to, and through, the various stages of the reorganized educational 
system. Not included is special education which will, in many respects, 
form a parallel system. Nor has there been depicted the flow of those gain- 






_ University- 17 



Apprent iceship 
Trai ni ng 














:-C£^_ — — . 

I "^ ! 


r ^ -[ 

I 3 ! 

(6-4-3 plan) 


fully employed in industry and commerce to courses in the provincial tech- 
nical institutes, apprenticeship training, or to part-time courses. Reference 
to the teacher-training programme, which will be discussed in detail in a 
subsequent chapter, has also been omitted. 

66. As shown in the diagram, some children below the age of compulsory' 
school attendance will enter kindergarten or nursery school classes; but the 
majority will begin their education at approximately age 6 in an elementary 
school. Following the six-grade course in an elementary school, pupils at 
approximately age 12 will go to a new secondary school for four years, 
completing this programme at approximately age 16. This will mark 
the end of the period of compulsory school attendance; after this stage 
specialization in one of the major fields will begin for those who are quali- 
fied. Many young persons will, of course, discontinue their formal education 
at this point, except possibly for part-time day and evening courses, and 
seek gainful employment. Others will enter upon a period of apprenticeship 
training which will, in some cases, be combined with full or part-time at- 
tendance at a provincial technical institute or other school conducting such 
courses. Others who can meet the entrance qualifications will enter a junior 
college to take the university-preparatory or vocational courses there offered. 
It is expected that the majority of these students will remain to complete 
the specialized three-year university-preparatory or two-year vocational pro- 
gramme of the junior college; but some may wish, or may find it necessary, 
to seek employment at an earlier date. Some will leave at the end of the 
second year to enter upon a course of training at a provincial technical 
institute, or to take apprenticeship training independent of, or associated 
with, the courses at such institutes or a junior college. Those completing 
the three-year university-preparatory course may choose one of three major 
alternatives: they may enter employment directly; continue their training 
in institutes or through apprenticeship; or enter a university. 

Implementation of the Reorganization 

67. In view of the complexity of the problems which will arise in the 
reorganization, we feel that we should place on record our ideas concerning 
the most satisfactory methods of implementing our proposals. 

( 1 ) Elementary education should be immediately reorganized and new 
courses of study should be drafted for each of the six grades. One aim 
of the revision should be to permit pupils to achieve by the end of the 
new grade VI at least the standard attained at present by pupils by 
the end of grade VII. 

(2) Along with the reorganization of elementary education, post-elementary 
education should be reorganized on a 4—3 basis and new courses of 
study drafted for each grade. 

(3) Each local education authority for elementary education should be 
required to survey conditions within its area. Within a reasonable 



period after enactment of the implementing legislation, it should pre- 
pare and submit to the Minister proposals for development, showing 
the financial resources of the aiithorit\^ and the means to be employed 
in financing this stajje of education. 
( 4 ) Each local education authority for post-elementary education should be 
required to survey conditions within its area. Within a reasonable 
period after enactment of the implementing legislation, it should pre- 
pare and submit to the Minister a comprehensive plan of development 
for secondary and further education. Each plan should be designed 
for immediate implementation and, where it is necessary to submit a 
partial plan, an orderly development toward the realization of the 
complete 6-4-3 organization should be outlined. 



1. With the largely increased attendance which followed the introduc- 
tion of compulsory attendance, highly organized systems of grading and pro- 
moting pupils were developed. It is difficult to determine whether they were 
based upon a philosophy of education or upon mere administrative con- 
venience; but, in any case, the result was a rigid system of classification by 
grades, and of annual promotions based solely on achievement in courses 
of study which were carefully graded and minutely detailed. The adminis- 
trative machinery for this, probably because of its conveniency and efficiency, 
survived relatively unchanged tlirough decades of fundamental changes in 
education. Finally, however, the system was recognized as being so obviously 
at variance with prevailing beliefs, and so clearly a matter of administrative 
convenience only, that it was successfully challenged. This development has, 
however, taken place recently; its full effect has been felt, in our o\vn 
province, only within the last two decades; and a conflict of opinions, as 
shown in briefs presented to this Commission, still exists. 

2. In our statement of what, in our opinion, should be the aims of 
education, we have stressed the interdependence of di£Ferent aspects of 
growth, and the need to consider the child as an indivisible entit)'. The 
implications are far-reaching; they determine a large part of all our findings 
and recommendations; but nowhere are they more evident than in the 
sections dealing with the organization of the educational system and the 
school programme. We have arranged the stages of the educational system 
to correspond as nearly as possible to those of child development. The 
advantages so gained, however, will be vitiated unless, in the school, we 
can secure a curriculum and environment which will at each stage ade- 
quately foster the growth of each pupil. 

3. To see why this is so, we must turn again to the findings of psvcholo- 
gists and others relating to child development. It is the child who grows, 
and it is to assist in his growth that the school programme must be designed. 

'This and the following chapter were prepared prior to the publication on December 
10th, 1949, of a "Memorandum re Revision of Curriculum" by the Minister of Education; 
any resemblance between our proposals and the changes announced by the Minister is, 
therefore, coincidental. 



In planning it, we must first determine the needs, interests, and abilities of 
the child in all aspects of his development. In addition to differences between 
anv two children, each individual changes as he grows and develops. In a 
very real sense, each child is exceptional; each poses an educational problem 
which is, in fact, unique. 

Patterns of Child Growth 

4. In spite of this fact, adequate provision for the great majority of 
children can be included within the framework of a general system of 
education. Special provision need be made for only a small minority of 
children who are markedly atypical in one or more aspects of development. 
The differences between children become greater and the effect on total 
development becomes more apparent as they grow older. This requires that, 
within the general educational system, adequate provision be made for a 
continuously expanding range of variation. It follows that if all children 
are to obtain the satisfaction which comes only from successful achievement, 
which is essential to their full development, a wide variety of courses and 
activities must be provided in the school programme. 

5. Achievement, in the generally accepted sense, largely depends on 
ability to learn. Every child cannot proceed at the same rate and cover the 
same range, and evaluation of growth must take into account individual 
abilities and accomplishments. Mental ability tends to improve at a de- 
creasing rate from infancy until intellectual maturity in the post-adolescent 
period. The tremendous strides in the growth of mental ability between the 
first and second birthdays of any child are obvious; growth between the 
twelfth and thirteenth birthdays is much less evident. Generally speaking, 
the child's intelhgence quotient, or I.Q., the index of relative brightness, 
tends to remain constant and, except for the effects of injury, illness, mal- 
nutrition, or similar factors, the limit of mental growth is, within reasonable 
bounds, fixed early in life. 

6. To intellectual must be added physical and motor, as well as social 
and emotional, \^ariations. Thus, the school programme must be planned to 
meet the needs of a bewildering complex of individual differences. Fortu- 
nately, however, there are patterns in the maze of individual differences 
which may be discerned and used as guides. In using them, it must be 
remembered that a pattern is based on averages. Moreover, there is not 
necessarily a single consistent pattern for all traits associated with the 
development of an individual. Nevertheless, patterns make it possible to 
devise bases on which to organize an educational programme. 

7. As we have seen, all children pass through recognizable stages of 
development and have needs peculiar to each stage. In what follows we 
shall concern ourselves, in the main, with the three major areas of growth- 
physical, mental, and social. Motor development will be treated in con- 
junction with physical development; and observations on emotional develop- 


ment will be made in our treatment of social development, wdth which it is 
closely related. Of course, these "areas of growth" do not exist in isolation; 
but, for our purpose, they can be discussed separately. 

Physical and Motor Development 

8. The period of late infancy, from 3 to 5 years, is characterized by 
relatively rapid physical growth. This growth is not so spectacular as that 
of the first three years of life, but it is more pronounced than it will be, 
except during the period of adolescence, in tlie years which follow. There 
is a rapid development in motor skills, more noticeable in the gross bodily 
movements. While practice and learning are important in the development 
of these skills, it must be borne in mind that they will develop in their own 
good time, and for the most part the child will not need adult coaching, 
but opportunity and encouragement only. His motor life is characterized 
by incessant activity, frequent and sudden fatigues, and quick recovery. For 
proper physical and motor development he needs plenty of freedom for 
activity. To be forced to remain physically quiescent for long periods of 
time is not conducive to nonnal physical growth; on the other hand, his 
activities should be carefully supervised, so that he may be neither en- 
couraged nor permitted to push himself into a state of excessive fatigue. 
The child's need for rest and nutrition should not be neglected. Although 
susceptibilitv' to fatigue varies widely among children, appropriate rest 
periods should be available for all. Since children at these ages are particu- 
larly susceptible to epidemics, they should be under careful medical super- 
vision, and a careful watch should be kept for ailments that are 

9. Throughout the period of childhood from age 5 or 6 to age 12, physical 
growth continues in a fairly regular way. The child improves steadily in all 
his motor skills— in muscular strength, in speed and accuracy of movement, 
and in motor co-ordination. Motor activities have great influence in the 
child's development, and motor competence is highly important for his 
happiness. Tliis is the period of development of the finer muscular co- 
ordinations. Diuring these years, it is largely through motor activities that 
the child, perhaps more particularly the boy, makes voluntary social associ- 
ations both in school and in the community. Moreover, motor skills pay 
dividends which will be extremely useful to him as an adult. Not only do 
they make him more competent in occupations which call for motor dex- 
terity, but (and this is often of more consequence) they also lay the 
foundation for physical well-being and for wholesome recreational activi- 
ties. Medical supervision should be continued. Children are still susceptible 
to infections and epidemics; physical defects that can be corrected should 
be identified and remedied as early as possible. 

10, We have earlier referred to the major physical changes accompany- 
ing adolescence, in particular to acceleration in the rate of physical growth 


and the attainment of maturity. Boys, at all ages above early childhood, 
tend to be superior to girls in muscular strength and development, and this 
tendency is accentuated during adolescence. This difference between boys 
and girls may be attributed partly to innate constitutional factors, but more 
to cultural and environmental influences. Play activities entailing physical 
strength and endurance, which largely provide the exercise necessary for 
muscular development, are encoiuaged in boys but, for the most part, dis- 
couraged in girls. In both boys and girls, except for the temporary setback 
experienced during the awkward age of early adolescence, motor skills and 
motor co-ordination develop steadily and arrive at adult levels during late 
adolescence or early in the post-adolescent period. But there is a. falling off 
in physical activity during late adolescence, owing to a widening of the 
sphere of interests, and play activities lose their former position of pre- 

Social and Emotional Development 

11. At the beginning of the period of late infancy, the chUd is still 
largely physically and socially dependent on adults, but has begun to assert 
himself as an individual. This phenomenon of resistance to adult demands 
is so universal that it would appear to be a normal feature in the develop- 
ment of the self. The struggle against confonnity varies in intensity from 
child to child; but most children learn the lessons in conformity suflBciently 
well before grade I. Pupils can be treated by the teacher of grade I as a 
group of individuals amenable to reasonable control. Throughout the years 
of the individual's development from infancy to adulthood, he is engaged 
in a process of winning emancipation from dependence on the home, and 
in building social relationships with people outside his family circle. A fair 
amount of this social growth takes place during the period of late infancy. 
As he enters this period, the child develops a desire to play in the company 
of other children. At first, there is a tendency for the play to be individual 
rather than co-operative; although surrounded by others, each child is 
absorbed in his own pursuits. Later, he begins to enter into group activities. 
But, even at age 6, he is unlikely, without adult help, to participate effective- 
ly in group projects where the group is large. 

12. During late infancy, the child's relations with others of his own age 
are characterized by a good deal of self-assertive behaviour. With the 
younger child, it takes the form of struggling for possession of a toy, push- 
ing, and hitting. As he grows older, he discovers more subtle means of 
achieving his ends. There is less hitting and more arguing. In all this the 
child is learning how to get along with others, and how best to hold his 
own in a competitive world— an important part of his education. Growth in 
emotional behaviour is associated with this development; love, fear, sorrow, 
rage, joy, and other emotions are powerful motivating forces and deeply 
involve the well-being and satisfaction of the child. His emotional reactions 


become less explosive and more subdued and controlled. He learns, for 
example, that temper tantrums are not an effective means of obtaining his 
aims, and that uncontrolled emotional outbursts bring the disapproval of 
his peers and isolation from them. However, as emotional expression comes 
progressively under the child's control, it becomes more difficult for others 
to infer his emotional state from his behaviour; and, if this control is carried 
to excess, it may imprison within him feelings and tensions of which cog- 
nizance should be taken by those who have him in their care. 

13. The beginning of the period of early childhood, which generally 
coincides with entrance into the first grade of the elementary school, consti- 
tutes a landmark in the process of the child's growing independence of his 
home, of his parents, and of his elders in general. Depending on the extent 
to which his growth has progressed, and perhaps equally on the nature of 
the environment and experiences which he will encounter in his first year 
at school, the hurdle v^dll be taken with greater or less disturbance to his 
sense of security. Nearly all children achieve an adjustment to the new 
situation, and continue the march toward freedom from earlier ties and 
toward a growing dependence on the society of their peers. Most of what 
the child learns of fair play, social adaptability, conformity to group re- 
quirements, and skill in group participation, he learns from his associations 
with children of his own age group. Early in this period, in some cases 
before, boys and girls begin to show a preference for association with play- 
mates of their own sex. This tends to become marked during the middle 
and later years of childhood, then to weaken during adolescence when 
interest in members of the opposite sex begins to come to the fore. 

14. With an increase in participation with other children in numerous 
activities comes intensification of the spirit of competition. Educators rightly 
stress co-operation rather than competition in human relations. Nevertheless, 
properly regulated competition serves a useful purpose as motivation to 
achievement. It must be recognized, also, that the spirit of competition is 
one of the strongest and most fundamental of human urges. We neither can, 
nor should, attempt to eliminate it from school; but we should regulate it 
and capitalize upon its motivating power. 

15. The emotional welfare of the child, during this period, tends to 
suffer from neglect both at home and at school. He has learned to keep his 
emotions concealed: he fights shy of any extravagant display of affection; he 
holds back the tears of disappointment and frustration; and he subdues 
unruly outbursts of temper. But the absence of any open expression of emo- 
tion cannot be accepted as an indication of emotional serenity. We make a 
mistake if we weigh the child's problems in adult scales. We must always 
remember that the worries of the 8-year-old, which seem trivial to adults, 
mav be fraught with great significance for him. They are as important as 



the most serious worn' of the adult, aud probably of greater importance 
in their effect upon growth and general well-being. 

16. Adolescence is an important period in the child's social and emotional 
development. The most conspicuous aspect of social development is the 
expansion of interest in members of the opposite sex. During pre-adolescence 
and earlv adolescence, as noted above, relations between the sexes are 
marked bv antipathv rather than attraction. As the child grows through 
middle and later adolescence, antipathy is replaced first by tolerance and 
then bv attraction. The attraction tends to develop earlier in girls and, as 
a consequence, thev have, at first, difficulty in attracting the attention of 
boys of their own age, and often turn to bovs a year or two older. The 
earlv displavs of interest in members of the opposite sex are not commonly 
characterized bv subtletv and refinement. But these awkward and self- 
conscious advances yield to a stage which is characterized by sudden and 
intense devotion to a particular playmate, and affection is transferred from 
one person to another with bewildering rapidit\ . This stage again is a 
passing phase in the child's development, leading to later adolescence, with 
more mature, more realistic, and usuallv more lasting, interests and attach- 
ments. In all these changes, a sound social adjustment contributes greatly 
to the child's present and future happiness in life. Social activities are 
essential to his education. Thev should be kept under reasonable control 
and supervision, and encouraged. 

17. Adolescence normallv brings a change in the t\'pe of voluntarv group 
in which the child takes an interest. Instead of being composed entirely of 
bo)S or of girls, it includes boys and girls in approximately equal numbers; 
and its purpose changes from excitement and adventure to the enjoyment 
of social activities. In its changed form, the group helps the adolescent to 
achieve confidence and ease in his associations with members of the opposite 
sex; it helps him to develop social skills; and it generally furthers his social 
and emotional development. 

18. For most boys and girls adolescence is a period of considerable 
emotional strain. The attaining of maturitv ushers in a new and unfamiliar 
era. It is accompanied by an increased interest in social activities, with the 
result that the adolescent becomes acutely concerned over such things as 
his social acceptabilits', his phvsical appearance, the quality and st\de of 
his clothes, and the amount of his spending monev. Emancipation from 
home ties and parental protection and authorit)^ is, in most cases, almost 
completed. This leads, in some cases, to a demand for more freedom than 
is desirable. In other cases, parents refuse to allow the freedom appropriate 
to the child's years. The struggle for independence is often characterized 
by friction and rebellion. But the youth is approaching adulthood, and one 
of the first responsibilities of the home and the school, and one of the most 


difficult to discharge satisfactorily, must be to guide him, without too much 
strain and turmoil, to a state of independence and freedom. 

Mental Development 

19. In early infancy a child's world is centred in the present; in late 
infancy he can entertain vivid memories of the past and, tlirough imagina- 
tion, concern himself in a limited way with the future. Much of his progress 
comes through the wonders of language. The average child advances from 
the use of three or four words at one year to about a thousand at 3 years. 
From then until his 6tli birthday he adds to his vocabulary about 50 new 
words a month. At the same time there is an improvement in sentence 
structure. Beginning with one-word sentences at about 18 months of age, the 
child advances to complete sentences, with pronouns, prepositions, articles, 
conjunctions, and inflected verbs, by about the age of 4. By the time he is 
5 years old, the average child, with little or no formal instruction, has 
achieved a facilit)' with language which is truly astonishing when compared 
with what is accomplished even with expert instruction at a later stage. 
For the most part, the child acquires fluency in the use of sentences through 
imitation, and learns the meaning of words by inference from their context. 
It is small wonder that many of the meanings and words are distorted, and 
that many of the distortions persist throughout life. On the other hand, his 
capacity to generalize in matters such as number and tense is remarkable. 
An important feature of this period is the child's growing familiarity with 
books. By acquiring ability to follow simple stories told or read to him, his 
vocabulary is broadened, his imae^ination is quickened, the span of his 
attention is lengthened, and a foundation is laid for learning to read. 

20. During later infancy the child makes tremendous strides in abilit)' 
to reason. He becomes increasingly able to understand happenings about 
him, and to give reasons for his own behaviour. By the end of this period 
he can reason logically, although adults should recognize that his powers of 
logic are necessarily limited by the range of his knowledge and experience. 

21. Even in late infancy the child's intellectual life appears to be charac- 
terized by an insatiable curiosity. Adults in the home and in the school are 
often blamed for the fact that this later becomes dulled. No doubt this mav 
be caused partly by the often imforgivable impatience of those to whom 
he turns for enlightenment, but it is probably to a larger degree a result 
of the mere process of growing up. Gradually he acquires a fund of 
knowledge which he accepts as sufficient for his needs, and there is no 
occasion for him to become so frequently lost in wide-eyed wonder. More- 
over, he is not so easily distracted. The span of his attention has more than 
doubled, and he becomes better able to persist in his pursuit of a goal, 
using only the knowledge and skills at his own disposal. 

22. Make-believe and imaginative play tend to reach their greatest de- 
velopment during this same period. With reasonable facility the child will 


assume the role of doctor or patient, horse or driver, pohceman or criminal, 
mother or infant. As he grows older he becomes increasingly desirous of 
assimimcr the more dominant role in the make-believe situation. When his 
knowledge, skills, and responsibilities increase, he becomes ever more 
absorbed in the world of reality, and it becomes both less easy and less 
necessary for him to find satisfaction in the world of make-believe. Never- 
theless, phantasy plays a very real part in his development. It stimulates his 
imagination, affords a means for the organization of his play activities, and 
permits him to transcend space and time, thus overcoming the limitations 
which his immaturit)' imposes. 

23. Mental development during the period of childhood is but an 
extension of that of infancy. Ability in the use of language increases, the 
powers of concentration improve, the child becomes more logical in his 
thought processes, and the dream-world recedes. Of special significance is 
the fact that his intellectual interests become less self-centred as he grows 
older. At age 6 he is almost wholly absorbed in happenings in which he 
himself participates, or which occur in his presence. At age 12 his horizon 
has broadened; he gives some attention to the world at large; and he dis- 
cusses current events with interest, and with a fair degree of understanding. 
This does not mean that, at about age 12, children may be rushed into 
subjects relating to political, economic, and social ideas which are of direct 
practical interest onl\' to adults. Many such ideas are quite meaningless to 
the chUd, since they are quite outside his area of experience and interest 
and have little in common wdth the normal aflFairs of childhood. It is indeed 
a far cr\' from the consuming self-interest of early childhood to that mental 
maturity which permits the individual to have any real interest in economic 
and political afi^airs. 

24. Improvement in vocabulary and language usage is still spectacular, 
although much less so than in the later years of infancy. The increase in 
vocabulary, for example, continues at a rate which, to adult eyes, is 
phenomenal. In marked contrast, children mature relatively slowly in their 
concepts of time, despite the fact that they may use the appropriate words 
and phrases freely, and generally correctly. There is considerable evidence 
to show that not until about the end of the period of childhood should a 
child be expected to cope understandinglv with historical dates and periods 
and with the chronology of historical events. Even intensive instruction 
does little to accelerate this understanding. For the most part, the child 
must be left to grow into the proper understanding through his day-to-day 
conversation and experience. 

25. Long before the period of childhood ends, the child will have 
managed to assign the make-believe world fairly well to its proper place in 
the scheme of things. Imaginative activities continue to play an important 
part in his life, but he becomes better able to distinguish between what is 
real and what is imaginary, and more firmly orientated in the world of 



reality. At the same time his ability to persevere continues to improve. Of 
course, he will exhibit most persistence and concentration in performing 
those tasks which enlist his interest, or which he recognizes as necessary 
to the achievement of a highly desired goal. Not only, however, does he 
improve in his ability to persist in tasks which contribute to the satisfaction 
of his own purposes, he also develops greater readiness to accept, as chores, 
routine jobs which have little or no interest in themselves. 

26. It is commonly accepted that maturity in the various aspects of 
mental development is attained during the period of adolescence or, at the 
latest, early in the post-adolescent period. But it is not surprising that there 
should be differences of opinion on this particular point since the increments 
of growth become smaller year by year and it is almost impossible to de- 
termine just when the maximum is reached. In any case, all do not arrive 
at their maximum mental ability at the same age. Nevertheless, we seem 
to be reasonably safe in assuming that, for all practical purposes, mental 
maturity is attained at approximately age 16. 

27. We can see more clearly what is meant by maturity in mental 
development if we consider one aspect of it in detail. This is the ability or 
capacity to learn, which has, for obvious reasons, been carefully stiidied. 
For the average child, growth in ability to learn keeps pace with increase 
in age until approximately age 16. For other children, growth in ability may 
be either slower than, or may outpace, the increase in age. Either variation 
will obviously affect the level of mental development attained when maturit\' 
is reached. For a number of children, growth is so retarded that even the 
best of them never attain an ability to learn beyond that of an average 
child of 8 years. These children, who are fortunately few in number, are 
classed as "ineducable" because their handicap is so great that they cannot 
be educated in ordinary schools. Another and larger group consists of those 
whose maximum levels of ability range between those attained by an 
average child of 8 and an average child of 12. These children are generallv 
considered to be so handicapped that they must be educated in special 
classes separated from others of the regular school system. The remaining 

Levels of Ability to Learn 





of Children 

Over 120 



110 to 120 



90 to 110 



7.5 to 90 

Below A\'era5?e 


50 to 75 

Very Dull and 

Feeble Minded 


Below 50 




children attend classes in the usual schools. They may, however, be classified 
into three clearly distinguishable groups— below average, average, and above 
average; and sometimes a fourth group, for those classed as gifted, is added. 
A commonly accepted classification, on the basis of ability to learn, is 
shown in Table 1, together with the percentage of the population falling 
into each category. 

28. Alongside these differences between children, and frequently inde- 
pendent of them, are differences in other aspects of development. In physical 
development children range from those who are physically handicapped to 
those who are physically gifted, and there is a similar range in their social 

Implications for the School Programme 

General Implications 

29. To plan a programme of education which will be suitable for the 
average child is, in itself, a diflBcult task; to plan a programme which will 
also meet individual differences presents a problem which educators do not 
claim to have solved. Yet a solution must be attempted if we are to create 
a public system of education based on the compulsory attendance of all 
children of specified ages. How may children be taught in groups, as they 
must because of the large numbers to be taught, when each child in the 
group is unique and poses a unique educational problem? 

30. Many of the existing policies and practices of education were devised 
before much knowledge of the growth needs and patterns of children had 
been gained. The graded school, with its uniform programme arranged in 
detail, grade by grade, is a common feature of all educational systems. The 
original purpose was to secure homogeneity in the classroom. All the 
children were taught alike and promoted according to a uniform standard. 
The system worked, and still works, well enough for the average child, but 
not for the others. The weaker children were piled up, as "over-aged", in 
the lower grades; the brighter ones coasted along and developed poor habits 
of study and work. Dissatisfaction grew. In time, school authorities either 
changed their policies and practices materially, or at least showed a readi- 
ness to do so. 

31. The changes which were made were based on the assumption that 
the root of the difficulty lay in the uniform rate of progress and in the 
system of annual promotions. Accordingly, semi-annual and even quarter- 
annual promotions were introduced, so that those failing to gain promotion 
were not required to repeat a full year. In the Batavia plan^ the system of 
annual promotions was retained, but the children in each classroom were 
divided into two groups. The pupils who had been making reasonable 
progress were included in one group and those who had been retarded 

'So named from the community in New York where it originated. 


were placed in the other; and the teacher, or an assistant teacher, devoted 
special attention to coaching the laggards, so that all might cover the same 
programme at the same rate. The purpose was to bring the dull children 
up to normal standard. Some pupils did benefit but the normal and gifted 
tended to be sacrificed in order that all might proceed at the same rate. In 
the Cambridge plan' the elementary school programme was divided into 
two parallel courses, arranged so that one course could be completed in six 
years and the other in eight. The scheme was based upon the retention of 
a uniform curriculum and a system of annual promotion, but allowed for 
two rates of progress. Children were transferred from one course to the 
other according to the progress they had made. This allowed brighter 
children to complete the programme before they were physically and 
socially ready to enter a secondary school, but it did not allow the very 
dull to complete the standard course. 

32. In a widely accepted variation of the Cambridge plan, the rate of 
progress was held constant, but three parallel courses were set up: an en- 
riched course for the gifted child; an average course for the average child; 
and a minimum course for the slow child. All children completed the 
programme in the same number of years, but with widely varying ac- 
comphshments. The purpose was to give each child, as far as possible, a 
curriculum and rate of progress suited to his ability', while retaining the 
group method of teaching. Although this plan has been eminently successful 
in many respects, it has been criticized se\'erely. Parents and others have 
objected to the classification and "labelling" of pupils. Some critics have 
pointed out that, since a child varies in his abilities, a strictly homogeneous 
grouping could be achieved only by changing the classification for each 
type of activity. 

33. Logically, the ideal solution would seem to be individual programmes 
together with rates of progress designed specifically for each child. This has 
been attempted, but with varying degrees of success. Only two well known 
plans need be mentioned. Washburne, in the Winnetka plan,^ divided the 
programme into two parts: firstly, the basic "tool subjects", and secondly, 
group and self-expression activities. In the latter, although no achievement 
goals were set, individuality was encouraged. In the former, however, units 
of work were established and a pupil was allowed to progress as rapidly 
as he could master them. Somewhat similar was the Dalton plan.^ Here the 
regular curriculum was divided into "blocks" of work, and the pupil con- 
tracted with the teacher to do a "block" in a specified time, being free to 
work more or less as he wished on the various subjects comprising it. Each 
child could, therefore, proceed at his own rate. 

34. Such plans, however, made the task of administering the school 

'Originating in Cambridge, Massachusetts. 
'Originated at Winnetka, Illinois, in 1919. 
^Originated at Dalton, Massachiisetts, in 1919. 


programme very difiBcult and onerous. Usually it was found to be more- 
convenient to leave the graded system untouched and to set up special 
classes for the children who did not fit into it. Such classes have been 
variously named— "ungraded classes", "opportunity classes", "pick-up 
classes", and so on— but their jiurpose has nearly always been to return the 
child to his regular grade as quickly as possible. Their advantage lay in the 
fact that the classroom teacher was reheved of the extra burden of coaching 
retarded pupils, who received instead specific and expert individual instruc- 
tion. Their weakness lay in the erroneous assumption that all children would 
complete the regular programme at a uniform rate of progress if some 
special help were provided occasionally for those who lagged behind. 

■35. Many of these plans ilhistrate the ingenuity of their authors; but the 
generally common feature of a standard programme with variation only in 
the rate of progress has yielded unsatisfactory results. 

36. The ideal solution— individual programmes for each child— is not 
practicable in a system of publicly supported education. Some compromise 
must therefore be efi^ected between what is ideal and what is practicable. 
There are a number of principles upon which such a compromise must be 
based. Firstly, the growth of each individual pupil in all aspects of develop- 
ment must be evaluated in order that his needs and abilities may be known. 
In fact, the programme will be largely determined by the information so 
revealed. Secondly, classification of pupils is necessary; but it must be flex- 
ible, as conditions vary greatly from school to school, from level to level, 
and even from classroom to classroom. In a system of publicly supported 
education, classification of pupils permits the closest approximation possible 
to the ideal of individual instruction. Thirdly, the curriculum, courses of 
study, and teaching methods must be adapted to meet the needs of the 
pupils in the various groups; there cannot be a single, uniform, strictly 
graded curriculum. This is the closest approximation possible in a system 
of publicly supported education to the ideal of a specific programme for 
each individual child. Fourthly, markedly atypical children must receive 
special educational treatment in schools and classes separate from those of 
the regular school system. There must also be remedial instruction in the 
classroom or, if need be, temporarily in special groups, in order that an 
unnecessarily fine classification of pupils may be avoided. Finally, the poli- 
cies and practices which are followed in any stage of education must be in 
conformity with the aims of that stage. 

37. Before specific suggestions and recommendations for each of the 
three stages of the reorganized educational system are given, a number of 
general findings must be recorded. They constitute, in eflFect, the principles 
upon which our specific recommendations are based. 

38. Taken together, the new elementary and secondary stages of the 
educational system correspond in length to the period of compulsory school 
attendance. Provision must therefore be made in them for the education of 


all children. The major emphasis must be upon general education if the 

minimum standard required of all citizens is to be achieved and the fullest 

possible development of all aspects of personality obtained. We recommend 

that in the elementary and secondary stages provision be made: 

(i) for classification of children according to needs, ability, and 

achievement at each level of the programme; 
(ii) for promotion according to individual achievement, evaluated in 

terms of capacity and total development; 
(iii) for programmes arranged on the following basis: 

( 1 ) fl minimum core of skills and knowledge to be attainable with 
reasonable success and to be taken by all pupils; 

( 2 ) a supplement to be taken by pupils of average ability; 

(3) an enriched supplement to be taken by pupils of higher than 
average ability; 

(iv) for special educational treatment of markedly atypical children in 
separated classes. 

39. At the stage of further education, the benefits of the specialized pro- 
grammes can be obtained only by students who possess at least a specified 
minimum of ability, skill, and knowledge, within the elected field. Although 
there will be emphasis, at this stage also, on the total development of per- 
sonality and on achievement to the utmost of capacity, a change. in standards 
must be made. Instead of a standard of achievement appropriate to groups 
of varying ability, there will be a minimum standard sufficient to ensure 
competence, and applicable to all. We recommend 

(a) that, in the stage of further education, the major criterion for en- 
trance to, and promotion within, a specialized field, whether aca- 
demic, vocational, or technical, be the attainment of minimum stan- 
dards of achievement expressed in terms of skill and knowledge; 

( b ) that a standard curriculum be provided in each specialized field. 

40. A related general question is that of the retardation and acceleration 
of the progress of pupUs. By retardation of progress we mean requiring a 
pupil to repeat the work of a year or of a course. We believe that this should 
not be necessary where a programme is provided for the pupil which suits 
his ability and demands efi^ort on his part. Retardation generally has ill 
effects on the development of the pupil and on that of other pupils with 
whom he is ill fitted, physically and socially, to associate. Repetition of a 
imit of work, however, may be necessary because of illness or for other 
reasons, or because of failure to achieve a standard commensurate with 
ability. Retardation at the elementary and secondary school stages suggests 
failure to provide the programme best adapted to aid the child in his de- 
velopment. At the stage of further education, it may indicate that the student 
has not the ability necessary for the specialized course he has selected; if 
this is reasonably certain, he should be encouraged to pursue a line of en- 
deavour for which he has particular ability and aptitude. Although allow- 
ance must be made in exceptional circumstances, we recommend 


that, where at all possible, retardation of progress of pupils, at any stage 
of the educational system, be avoided. 

41. By acceleration of progress we mean permitting an able pupil to 
complete all, or part of, the programme in less than the time normally re- 
quired. It may be argued, in favour of acceleration, that the mental capacity 
of many gifted pupils enables them to master the academic work of an 
accelerated programme. In our opinion, however, they profit more from an 
enrichment of the general programme appropriate to their stage of physical 
and social development. Indeed, the basic aim of the complete development 
of personality is abandoned when the progress of a child is accelerated to 
such an extent that he is separated from his appropriate social group. More- 
over, the programme of study in the new elementary school will be reor- 
ganized and intensified, and this will make acceleration of progress inadvis- 
able if not impossible. In the stage of further education, specialized courses 
will be designed for competent students, and acceleration will not, in 
general, be possible. In the new secondary stage, however, it may be possible 
to arrange for a maximum acceleration of one year by providing gifted stu- 
dents with a special course covering in two years the programme of the 
final three years. But we do not favour such action. Instead, we recommend 

that, as a general principle, acceleration of progress of pupils^ at any 
stage of the educational system, be avoided. 

42. Throughout our discussion we have assumed that provision will be 
made for the transfer of pupils from one classification to another and from 
course to course. Such transfers within and between schools, at the elemen- 
tary and secondary school levels, should be made without unnecessary repe- 
tition of courses and without unduly impeding the pupil's general progress. 
These conditions also apply in regard to the transfer from one course to 
another at the stage of further education. Here they will be more diflBcult 
to meet because the programme will be specialized. 

43. Our general belief regarding progress is that promotion should be 
based on achievement measured in terms of total development. Full effort 
on the part of the student is assumed. In our opinion, there can be no true 
achievement without effort; nor, with effort, can there be complete failure. 
This interdependence of effort and achievement is fundamental in all human 
endeavour. But effort alone is not the sole determining factor in successful 
achievement. The upper limit of performance for the individual is deter- 
mined by capacity; the degree to which this limit is attained is determined 
by effort. Effort seems to be an acquired rather than an innate characteristic. 
It is essential, therefore, that every means be utilized to develop this at- 
tribute of self-discipline. Only in this way can the child develop habits of 
work which will enable him to make the utmost use of his capacity and 

44. The general principles discussed above make it necessarv for the 
teacher to be given an opportunity to study and to assess the all-round 
growth of each of his pupils. The extent to which he can be ad\'iser and 


friend to each pupil, studying his entire personaUty, assisting him in his 
total development, and counselling him in meeting his problems, obviously 
depends on the number of students for whom the teacher is responsible. 
Large classes are likely to give rise to inappropriate and ineffective methods 
of instruction, to encourage reliance on commercially distributed lesson aids, 
to restrict adaptations for individual differences, to retard the progress of 
the students, and to add greatly to the work of the teacher. Briefs from 
several sources have drawn attention to the difficulty of teaching large 
classes effectively. We are of opinion that in both elementary and secondary 
schools the number of pupils in any class should be limited to a maximum 
of 30. In junior college, the maximum might possibly be raised to 35, where 
equipment and accommodations permit it, without adversely affecting 

Implications for Kindergartens 

45. In kindergarten the question frequently arises as to whether or not 
a particular child is "ready" to enter grade I with others of the same chrono- 
logical age. By "ready" we mean acceptable in all aspects of development- 
physical, social, and mental. The answer must always lie in what is best 
for the child. Promotion must be determined in relation to his appropriate 
group, the one in which he will develop best. In the case of the atypical, as 
well as the markedly at\'pical, child, growth may weU be retarded if he is 
promoted; but for nearly all children of these ages growth will be retarded 
if they are not promoted. A child should be required to spend extra time in 
the kindergarten only when the evidence is overwhelmingly in favour of it. 

Implications for Elementary Schools 

46. As noted previously, one stage in a child's development seems to be 
completed and another begun at approximately age 8-plus. Within the new 
elementary school, therefore, there are two recognizable stages in the 
child's growth, and therefore there should be a corresponding change in 
the programme after the elementary' skills and concepts have been intro- 
duced. For these reasons, we have regarded grades I to III, and grades IV 
to VI, respectively, not as individual grades but as groups comprising 
divisions of the elementary school. In planning the curriculum and courses 
of study, it might be advantageous to retain the grade classification; but in 
the internal organization of the school and in the school programme, the 
evidence is nearly all in favour of discarding the traditional grade system. 
In our opinion, it is desirable to organize the programme of the elementarv 
school in two divisions, which we have for convenience called junior and 
senior, each of three years' duration. Although they are distinct, one division 
shades into the other, and they have the same general aims. If the six-grade 
programme is thus divided into junior and senior divisions, it may be pos- 
sible in certain cases to organize a separate department in the school for 
each. This is, in fact, the practice in England. Conditions are such in Ontario, 


however, that the provision of separated departments cannot be made man- 
dator)'. In any case, even in one-room schools, the programme should be 
divided into junior and senior divisions. 

47. The programme of each division should be organized as a unit in 
which the pupil spends three years, there being no promotions or failures 
witliin it. W'herever possible, the organization within a division should 
permit each teacher to have under his charge the pupils of all three years, 
and allow pupils to remain with one teacher for three years. A class might 
then consist of ten pupils of each of the age groups. Ten pupils would 
normallv be promoted annually from the division, and ten beginners would 
enter it. Many of the activities in social studies, natural science, art, and 
music might be engaged in by all pupils, the enterprise method being in 
general use. The centre of interest in each activity should be the same for 
all pupils; but the tasks required and the degree of attainment expected 
should vary with the ages, aptitudes, and abilities, of the children. Such an 
organization approximates conditions in the ordinary life of children out 
of school, where those of about the same age normally engage in the same 
play activities. For the "tool subjects", such as reading, writing, and arith- 
metic, which are sequential in nature, it will be possible to organize the class 
into a small number of groups, with the members of each having relatively 
the same degree of attainment. Thus it will be possible for a younger child 
who is a superior reader to become a member of a more advanced reading 
group, or for a child who is deficient in arithmetic to work with a less ad- 
vanced group in that subject, while remaining with his own age group in 
other activities of the class. Such an organization will make possible pro- 
vision for individual differences and varying rates of attainment, so woefully 
lacking in a system of rigid grading and annual promotions. It will at the 
same time enable all children to master the minimum core required, and 
afford an enriched programme for the average and above-average children. 
The latter will still retain their membership in their own age group, thus 
associating with children of approximately their own degree of physical and 
social development. 

48. Experience has demonstrated^ that in such an organization prac- 
tically all pupils reach an acceptable standard of achievement and may be 
promoted at the end of each division. However, for the markedly atypical 
children, treatment in separated classes will be required. Thus, even the 
above flexible arrangement has its limitations; but under it the needs of 
nearly all children can be met. The advantages of such an organization may 
be summarized as follows: 

( 1 ) It presents very few administrative problems. 

(2) There is opportunity for a thorough study and understanding of each 

(3) It provides uninterrupted time for continuous work. 

^Suggestions with Regard to Some Persistent Elementary School Problems, Bulletin 
of the School of Education, Indiana University, Vol. XXV, No. 1, January, 1949. 


(4) It avoids frequent promotion upheavals and wasted time and effort 
resulting from frequent transfers from teacher to teacher. 

(5) It gives an opportunity to provide for individual differences and vary- 
ing rates of growth and to adapt the programme to meet the known 
needs of the child. 

(6) It makes retardation or acceleration of progress of pupils unnecessary'. 

Implications for the Secondary School 

49. Children will normally enter a secondary school at about age 12, and 
attend for four years until the completion of the secondary school stage or 
at least until the upper limit of the age of compulsory school attendance has 
been reached. Except in unusual circumstances, the vast majority of children 
will complete the secondary school programme; the ten years of compulsory 
attendance extend over the period which will normally be required for 
completion of the elementary and secondary school programmes. 

50. Two salient features of secondary school education are worthy of 
special note: the period corresponds to that of early adolescence; and for 
many children it will be the final stage of formal education. It is because of 
the marked changes in early adolescence that we have recommended that 
a second stage of education begin at about age 12, which will coincide for 
most children with the beginning of adolescence, and extend to about age 
16, when the majority are physiologically mature. Since many children will 
leave school at the end of this stage, the programme must be so arranged 
that instruction in the essentials required of all citizens is offered in sec- 
ondary schools. A major purpose must be the acquisition of indispensable 
knowledge, skills, and attitudes, that is, education for life. Of those leaving, 
many will enter the field of employment, and others will continue their 
education in a specialized field. Accordingly, all must be allowed to take 
optional courses affording them an opportunity to explore various avenues 
leading either to further specialized training or to vocations. 

51. Because of this, it is more difficult to arrange suitable programmes 
to meet individual differences in the new secondary schools than it is in the 
new elementar)' schools. As noted previously, individual differences are 
greater at this stage and become a serious problem to those who arrange 
the school programme. Ability of students to learn diverges so widely that 
it becomes impossible to cope satisfactorily with its variations within the 
same classroom. Moreover, children who up to this point may have been in 
the same classroom will at this stage select different options and pursue 
what are, in effect, different programmes. In any case, the exploratory 
courses in vocational and scientific fields cannot be offered in each class- 
room; the need for special equipment is alone sufficient to make this im- 

52. A radical and sudden departure from the procedures of the ele- 
mentary school is inadvisable, and is unnecessary in the first, and second 


years of the new secondar)' school. Nearly all the evidence on the subject 
strongly supports the practice of assigning students to a "home-room" and 
a "home-room" teacher, where they will receive instruction in the majority 
of subjects. Only in subjects such as general science, home economics, in- 
dustrial arts, physical education, and possibly music, need the students be 
re-classified and assigned in groups to other teachers who will be responsible 
for these subjects only. This general arrangement should be continued 
throughout the secondary school, being modified as the number of optional 
courses increases, so that the close pupil-teacher relationships may not be 
broken and responsibilitv' for the programme of each student may be as- 
signed to one particular teacher. We are inclined to favour a similar arrange- 
ment for the final tsvo years; but we realize that some other procedure, such 
as the one in which certain teachers are given responsibility for student- 
counselling, may prove to be more efficient and desirable. 

53. The major problem of the secondary schools, then, will be to arrange 
for each student a course suitable to his attainments, aptitudes, interests, 
and abilities, and, at the same time, to form groups of reasonable size and 
homogeneity for teaching purposes. A minor problem arises in connection 
with this major one. How are transfers from one course to another to be 
arranged when the original classification is found to be in error? Error, it 
is freely admitted by all authorities, may well be discovered in a relatively 
few but still substantial number of cases. 

54. One fact is clear: children difler so widely in accomplishment, needs, 
interests, and abilities that they cannot pursue a common course in second- 
ary schools. We can see no alternative to a classification of students into 
at least three groups or streams for teaching and administrative purposes: 
below average, average, and above average. For each group or stream, a 
separate general programme will have to be arranged. A student will pursue 
the programme of his group throughout the secondary school. Arrangements 
must be made to permit his immediate transfer from one stream to another, 
particularly in the first two years of the secondary school course, if it 
becomes evident that his development can thereby be promoted. 

55. We are fully aware of the debatable features of this procedure and 
of the objections of parents and others to any system of classification of 
students. The system means that, upon completion of the secondary school 
stage, achievement of students will vary as widely as do ability and apti- 
tude. But this does not destroy the value of the practice if we do not blind 
our eyes to the facts concerning child growth and development, and if we 
are sincere in our desire to provide the fullest possible opportunity for the 
all-round development of each child. 

Implications for Further Education 

56. At the stage of further education, where specialization in one of the 
major fields is the aim, teachers will instruct only in the subject or subjects 


in which they are specially qualified, and students will receive instruction 
from a number of teachers. The practice of having a "home-room" and a 
"home-room teacher" cannot operate in view of the specialized nature of the 
course. Consideration should be given to the advisabilit)^ of assigning to 
each teacher responsibilit)' for the programmes of a number of students. 

57. The major factor determining progress will be achievement, evalu- 
ated not in terms of individual capacity but in relation to specified standards. 
The purpose is to have uniform and comparable standards of accomplish- 
ment and to measure, in relation to these standards, the competence of 
graduates of each specialized field. The students will already have demon- 
strated their ability to profit from advanced work, and they will have volun- 
tarilv chosen to continue their education. Some will later seek entrance to 
university, but the majority will bring their formal education to a close 
during, or at the end of, this stage. In most cases, therefore, the latter will 
choose either a general course or a course in some special vocational field. 
Students will be selected: firstly, on the basis of a personal choice of a major 
field by the student and his parents; and, secondly, on the basis of a qualify- 
ing examination for entrance to the elected course. After admission, they 
will be required to continue to meet high standards of achievement and 
performance. Only those who demonstrate their abilit}' will be pennitted 
to continue, thus ensuring competence in the graduates of such specialized 
courses. Moreover, while a student may transfer from course to course, he 
will be required, regardless of the work he has taken, to complete those 
elective specialized courses (or their equivalent) of the option to which he 
wishes to transfer. 

58. Each student will have an indi\'idual programme designed to meet 
his needs, interests, abilities, and aptitudes. Normally, a number of students 
will elect the same course or series of courses, and teaching in groups will 
be the normal procedure. However, in the science and vocational courses the 
number of pupils per teacher should be greatly reduced; the nature of such 
courses and the special equipment required in them make it necessary to 
approach as closely as possible to individual instruction. At this level there 
will be very little need for external motivation. A mastery of subject-matter 
and skills in related fields is essential; and supervised study, together with 
laboratory methods, will be widely used. 

The Measurement of Pupn. Growth 

59. Our view of the aims of education requires that teachers and others 
conduct a continuing evaluation of all aspects of the growth of each child. 
As child growth is complex, the measuring of it presents some diflBcult prob- 
lems. At present, objective measurement of all aspects of growth is not 
always possible. This is particularly the case in the fields of social and moral 
development, although it holds true also for other fields. Yet these two 
fields are of the utmost importance; it is there that the inculcation of atti- 



tudes and ideals leading to worthy beha\ioiir provides a basis for citizen- 

60. In the field of physical and motor development, there are numerous 
objective measurements, such as tliose relating to height, weight, vision, and 
hearing. Measurement of phvsical growth has often been directed to the 
detection of illness and defects, not to an evaluation of what might be 
tenned normal growth and health. If we are to assist pupils in this aspect 
of their growth, we cannot proceed on the basis of a simple classification of 
children as "sick" and "not sick", but need a continuous scale showing at 
least the major gradations of health. With the help of this, the development 
of an individual may be assessed and, if necessary, remedial procedures and 
treatment provided to ensure optimum growth and general well-being. This 
is a burden which cannot properlv be added, in its entirety, to the growing 
list shouldered bv educational authorities. As we state in a later chapter, it 
should be primarily the responsibility of local, provincial, and federal health 
authorities. However, the school must also make its contribution, although 
it must plav a secondarv role. Even the best educational provisions may be 
of no avail in the case of those children who "are in poor condition physic- 
ally, nutritionallv, emotionallv and are just able to carry on by dragging 
themselves along from day to day . . ."^ 

61. There must be co-operation between school and health authorities 
to the end that both mav effectively assist in the evaluation and promotion 
of the health of each child. It is encouraging to note an increasing interest 
in this field, but much remains to be done. Complete information on the 
influence exerted by such factors as motor development, nutrition, meta- 
bolism, and structure of the brain and nervous system, on the learning of 
the so-called "school" subjects is not available. It is difficult to answer ap- 
parently simple questions which are ver\' much to the fore at the moment: 
Should meals and supplementary' feedings be provided for children in 
school? What t\'pe of meals and supplementary feedings shall be given? 
Shall the meals be given to all children or only to a few? What will be their 
effect on the physical, mental, social, and moral growth of children? Strange 
as it may seem, these questions cannot be answered on the basis of knowl- 
edge at present available: in the case of some there is no evidence; in no 
case has decisive evidence been produced. 

62. The field of social and emotional growth is frequently referred to as 
that of mental health, implying a contrast between basic psychological and 
basic physical needs. A generally accepted classification^ lists the emotional 
needs as emotional security (aflFection and belonging), independence, 
achievement, recognition (social approval), and self-esteem. It defines social 
need as the ne«d to develop "ability to live with others in a co-operative 

■Brief 51. Phys-ical and Health Education, submitted by Dr. E. Stanley Ryerson. 
Director, School of Physical and Health Education. University of Toronto. 

^Brief 24, Mental Hygiene, submitted by the National Committee for Mental Hygiene 
( Canada ) . 


and worthy way". Adequate satisfaction for all these needs, which will 
ensure healthy social and emotional growth, must be provided in the school 
as well as in the home and community. In addition, preventive and remedial 
measures must be instituted to prevent or correct the maladjustment which 
leads to acute unhappiness, delinquency, and mental illness. It is generally 
recognized that there is a major problem in this field: in evidence sub- 
mitted to us^ it was estimated that perhaps not more than one-third of 
". . . one hundred elementary school children selected at random . . ." 
would reach the maximum possible efficiency and happiness in life. 

63. It is one thing to recognize the need for the development of whole- 
some personalities, and even to identify and classify the basic psycho- 
logical needs; it is quite another to evaluate the social and emotional 
growth of a particular child at any given time. The objective measurement 
and grading of "mental health" on a continuous scale is very diflBcult. 
Scientific techniques of many fields are employed in mental hygiene, such 
as those of psychiatry, psychology, and medicine; but many are designed 
for the detection of mental illness alone, not for the purpose we have in 
mind. In this field, perhaps more than in any other, we must rely upon 
the results of subjective measures, but there is dire need for objective and 
accurate measurement. 

64. Since only a relatively small portion of a child's time is spent in 
school, complete responsibility for his social and emotional development 
cannot be placed upon the school. It is primarily the responsibility of the 
home, the church, and the community. Nevertheless, great assistance, and 
very much more than has ever been attempted in the majority of our pub- 
licly supported schools, can be rendered through the programme of the 
school. Attention has been limited, in the past, largely to achievement in 
intellectual studies. More attention must be paid, in future, to the inculca- 
tion of attitudes and ideals resulting in worthv behaviour. The evaluation 
of social and emotional growth must be accepted as a major responsibilit\' 
of teachers and school authorities. 

65. The field of mental or intellectual development has long been 
deemed to be the prerogative of the school. Society has delegated respon- 
sibility for formal education to the teacher, and "schooling" has been almost 
universally considered to be synonymous with mental development. A 
serious effort has been made by educationists to devise accurate and ob- 
jective measurements of various aspects of mental growth. Complete suc- 
cess has not been achieved, however, despite popular belief in the infalli- 
bility of school examination results. Even today some of the measures used 
are invalid; very few have a high degree of accuracy; and far too many 
are highly subjective in nature. Nevertheless, real progress has been made 
and, despite the admitted weaknesses of the measuring instruments at pres- 


ent available, they do enable a teacher to assess, with some confidence, the 
stage of mental growtli attained by any particular child. 

66. Mention has already been made of the measurement of innate 
abilit\', or intelligence, or learning capacity. There are a number of fairly 
satisfactory tests of this aspect of mental growth, both for the individual 
and for the group, and they are widely used in our schools. Their value is 
not now generally questioned, although misuse of them may upon occasion 
bring them into disrepute. The results in individual cases are sometimes 
liighlv inaccurate, and in all cases they need to be interpreted with con- 
siderable skill. Moreover, there is a need to analyze and define clearly what 
is meant bv ability or capacity, or at least to determine which aspects of 
the complex are more pertinent to the school situation. However, where 
properly used, the tests now available do, in large measure, meet tha need 
in this particular field. 

67. Attention has more recently been focussed on the measurement of 
interests and aptitudes, which are, of course, closely associated with ability 
or capacity. Success in securing objective measurements of these phases of 
development has not been outstanding. Particularly in the field of inter- 
ests, subjective measures are still largely employed. Aptitude testing is of 
great importance and shows some promise, although up to the present the 
results have been meagre and disappointing. Their predictive value, which 
is the prime consideration, is generally low. Nevertheless, in some areas, 
such as the measurement of reading readiness, very useful results have 
been obtained. Measurement of interest and aptitude is most important at 
the stage where specialized education is introduced, and here the results of 
such tests, combined with the information obtained from the records of 
progress in explorator)' courses, are of inestimable value to the student, to 
the parents, and to the teacher or counsellor. 

68. In all fields so far considered, therefore, at least a partial evaluation 
of pupil growth can be secured. In some fields, the data obtained will be 
objective and accurate; in others, they will be subjective and relatively in- 
accurate. For a significant number of aspects, the measurements that can 
be obtained are far from satisfactory. It is ob\'ious that more attention needs 
to be paid to this problem, in universities and in the field. 

School Examinations 

69. Examinations will always be an important feature of the educational 
system. They are an assessment by school authorities of the results of one 
of their major endeavours or, as some think, of their major endeavour. 
They deserve discussion, therefore, at considerable length. 

70. The value of any examination depends upon its validity and reli- 
ability. Validity is the degree of accuracy with which an examination 
measures what it is supposed to measure and is the most important criterion 


by which an examination may be judged. It is probable that no examination 
is perfectly valid, and it is quite certain that the validity of many school 
examinations is quite low. For example, an examination often does no more 
than measure the extent to which a student has memorized a prescribed set 
of facts, whereas the study of the subject may certainly be presumed to 
have bestowed benefits other than the acquiring of certain items of infor- 
mation. In such cases, the examinations have little or nothing to do with 
the ultimate goals of instruction and, to that extent, lack validity. If school 
achievement is to be measured with any degree of accuracy, educators 
must devise examinations specifically designed to measure the degree to 
which the aims of the system of education have been realized. 

71. Reliability is the degree of consistency with which examinations 
measure whatever they do measure. Measurement is reliable when results 
for the same pupil and in the same subject do not fluctuate widely from 
examination to examination. Pupils, parents, and employers have a faith 
in the fairness of school examinations which is not justified by the facts. 
Investigations have demonstrated beyond question that most school exami- 
nations are highly unreliable. For example, a boy who gets 85 marks on an 
examination in matliematics today may get 55 on a comparable examination 
tomorrow; and an English essay which one teacher values at 45, another 
teacher, equally competent, may value at 90. The unreliability of exami- 
nations arises in the main from two sources: the nature of the examination 
itself; and the scoring of it. Most examinations tend to be brief. Half-a- 
dozen questions, out of a possible hundred or more, may constitute an 
examination paper; and the candidate is, to a large extent, at the mercy of 
chance. Moreover, the student faces a hazard not only in the nature of the 
paper but also in the nature of the marking. A study conducted in England, 
for example, showed that examiners varied about as widely in evaluating 
essays as pupils varied in their ability to write them; the mark awarded to 
any particular essav depended almost as much on which examiner marked 
it as on which student wrote it. 

72. The surest method of making examinations reliable is to make them 
long, thereby minimizing the effects of chance in the choice of examina- 
tion questions, and to ha\'e them scored as objectivelv as possible, therebv 
eliminating the idiosyncrasies of those doing the marking. This latter is 
very difficult to achieve in the case of the traditional type of examination, 
commonly called the essay t^pe, in which the student, in answering the 
questions, writes what is in effect a series of short essays. On the other hand, 
the objective-type tests are highly reliable: a very large number of ques- 
tions can be answered in a relatively short period of time; and the scoring 
is perfectly objective. However, these tests have some serious weaknesses, 
more particularly from the point of view of validity; and there are certain 
areas, such as the measurement of ability to organize material logically 
and express ideals clearly and concisely, in which they are quite ineffec- 


tive. A judicious combination of examinations of both types is the best 
solution, but objective-type tests deserve a wider use than is at present 
given them. As the preparation of vahd and rehable school examinations 
requires considerable skill, more attention should be given in courses in 
education to this phase of a teacher's work. 

73. In spite of the important part which examinations play in the school, 
very' little reference was made to them in submissions to us. Even where 
reference was made, the matter usually had to do with the curriculum rather 
than with examinations per se. It was a surprise to us that so little attention 
was paid to the many useful purposes served by examinations in our edu- 
cational svstem, or to their weaknesses and the outright sins committed 
through them. Indeed, many authorities consider the faults of examinations 
to be so grievous that thev advocate a great curtailment in their use. An 
example of the baneful influence of written external examinations is weU 
described in a recent report of the Advisory Council on Education in 

Scottish education is of adult stature, and we are inviting it to assume re- 
sponsibilities and to show such initiative, inspirational leadership and bold 
experiment as go ill with the continued dominance of the external examination. 
For dominance we must call it. The evidence is, in our view, conclusive, and it 
is too strong to need exaggeration. We do not say that examinations are ruining 
secondary education in Scotland; hut they are gravely distorting it and narrowing 
its vision . . . 

The influence of examinations is three-fold. It aflFects the treatment of the 
examinable subjects themselves, tending always to exalt the written above the 
spoken, to magnify memory and mastery of fact at the expense of understanding 
and liveliness of mind. It depresses the status of the non-examinable, so that the 
aesthetic and creative side of education, with all its possibilities for human satis- 
faction and cultural enrichment, remains largely undeveloped and poorly esteemed. 
And lastly, the examination ivhicli began as a means, becomes for many the end 
itself. In the atmosphere created by this preoccupation with examination success, 
it us difficult to think nobly of education, to see in it the endless quest of man's 
preparation for either society or solitude. The cult of the examination has proved 
all too congenial to the hard practicality of the Scot, and in excessive concern 
about livelihood, the art of living has tended to be forgotten.' 

74. In view of such serious criticisms, we must examine with care the 
advantages and disadvantages of examinations and their use in the reor- 
ganized educational system. It could well be that in Ontario, as in Scot- 
land, a series of external written examinations, imposed by an outside body, 
would have the eflFect of forming a rigid mould into which our educational 
system would be forced. The result would be uniformity and stereotv-ping, 
fatal alike in the development of individual pupils and to the achievement 
of the educational goals we have specified. But we must distinguish be- 
tween external and internal school examinations. The fonner are set by 

'Scottish Education Department, Secondary Education, Edinburgh: His Majesty's 
Stationer>- Office, 1947, p. 43. Italics ours. 


some body outside the school to determine whether prescribed standards 
have been attained; they are associated, in most cases, with the award of 
certificates to "successful" students and with an indirect assessment of the 
work of an individual teacher or school. The latter are prepared and em- 
ployed from time to time by the teacher to evaluate the work of his pupils. 

75. Even the most rabid critic of examinations does not object to the 
internal school examination. It is an essential part of teaching method, a 
technique which teachers are encouraged to use. If properly used, it does 
not determine the aim, the content, or the emphasis of teaching, and is not 
generally accompanied by ill effects. If it is improperly employed, however, 
it may become a "local" external examination; in this event, it is to be 
roundlv condemned. Ordinarilv, of course, a teacher knows whether he is 
doing a superior or inferior job of instruction. But examinations, of one sort 
or another, are the only instruments by which he can, with any high degree 
of accuracy, measure the effectiveness of his teaching. From the results, he 
will leani which pupils are progressing satisfactorily and which will need 
additional help and encouragement if they are to succeed. 

76. External examinations, as the name implies, are not part of the 
teaching procedure. Nevertheless, they may dominate not onlv the curri- 
culum and courses of study but also teaching methods and practices. In 
the extreme case, all efforts in a school may be directed to the task of get- 
ting as many students as possible safely through the examinations. Such a 
concentration of attention upon them is difficult to avoid when they are 
used to assist in the maintenance of comparable standards of achievement 
from school to school. In that they tend to keep schools working roughly 
at the same level of efficiency, they must be applauded. But in that they 
tend to stereotype and standardize education generally, they should prob- 
ably be condemned. Matriculation examinations, for example, may so focus 
the attention on prescribed courses of study that revisions of the curri- 
culum, or even adaptations of courses of study, are discouraged. People 
who have onlv a vague idea of what matriculation really means assume 
that winning this certificate is the main goal of the high school student. 
This mass allegiance has made it extremely difficult for teachers and others 
to adapt courses of study to the wide diversity in the abilities and needs of 
pupils. When external examinations are designed in terms of the entrance 
requirements of another institution, such as a university, to which few of 
the students will proceed, and when no other measure of achievement or 
criterion of success is provided, the situation is aggravated. From this point 
of view, the criticism that in Ontario the entrance requirements of the 
universities dominate the entire secondary school programme is valid. Such 
a dominance is, of course, never intended, and it is deplored by educators 
in both universities and secondary schools; nevertheless, there is no doubt 
that, despite this fact, it continues to exist. 



77. It must be remembered that examinations help to motivate both 
teacher and pupils. The desire for success and approval is so strong in 
human nature diat it induces most students to prepare for examinations 
even when these are of an informal nature with no important consequences 
attendant on the results. In the case of external written examinations, how- 
ever, this incentive exists, for many students, during only a few weeks 
before the final examinations, leading to cramming in a frenzied pre-exami- 
nation effort. Needless to say, knowledge so acquired is transitory and 
readily evaporates. On the other hand, very undesirable habits of work 
mav well be acquired. If examinations are to be fully utilitzed as incentives 
to study, thev must be held frequently in order to guarantee that the 
efforts of students are spread over the full academic year. Only internal 
school examinations can be so arranged; and it is probable that the full 
effect, so far as incentive to study is concerned, can be secured without 
the use of external school examinations. 

78. In the case of teachers, two very different effects of motivation 
through the use of school examinations must be noted. Internal school 
examinations are used by the teacher to improve his instructional proce- 
dures. External school examination results are used, either formally or 
informally, by pupils, principals, and others, in order to rate the teachers. 
Used in moderation, this may, in the case of some teachers, be necessary 
and have a salutary effect; but if it is carried to the extreme, it may cause 
all teachers to concentrate all their energies and ingenuity on the external 
school examinations. There are many contributions which teachers make 
toward the growth and well-being of their pupils; but some of the most 
important of these cannot be expected in any large measure to influence 
examination results. Hence they tend to be neglected where external school 
examinations dominate the educational system. The importance of such 
examinations in determining the reputation of the teacher tends to make 
him a drill-master, his attention focussed on a narrow goal, and his eyes 
blind to many of the most important benefits of education in the school. 
To see teachers preparing their students for external school examinations 
by taking them over the matriculation papers for the preceding fifteen years, 
by coaching them on the types of questions most likely to be met, and by 
teaching them the tricks of writing examinations, is not to see education at 
its best. It is because of these deleterious effects that some authorities would 
abolish external school examinations entirely. 

79. Nevertheless, examination results do inform prospective employers, 
parents, and the pupil himself of progress and achievement. More than 
anyone else, the parent has a right to be made acquainted with the pro- 
gress, or lack of it, that his child is making in school. Research has shown 
that pupils achieve more when thev are told what progress they are making; 
this appears to be true whether the progress is good or bad. But for this 


purpose, internal school examinations, being more frequent, are consider- 
ably more valuable than external school examinations. They would be more 
valuable, also, for prospective employers if standards were comparable 
from school to school. Since they are not, the employer normally gives pre- 
ference to the results of external examinations. There is considerable evi- 
dence to indicate that, both in the professional and in the business world, 
the usefulness of these external examinations is being questioned. Experi- 
ence in personnel selection in industry and commerce has amply demon- 
strated that school achievement is but one factor among many; that it has 
a much lower predictive value in regard to future success than is generally 
appreciated; and that other factors, particularly those related to personality, 
are more important. We may again quote the report on secondary educa- 
tion in Scotland: 

Fortunately there are signs that some enlightened industrialists and business men 
are themselves beginning to doubt whether the familiar Certificate as at present 
awarded really answers their questions in regard to the products of the schools, 
whether indeed they have in the past been putting the right questions at all.^ 

80. In the universities, also, there is some questioning of the practice 
of defining entrance requirements almost solely in terms of the results of 
external school examinations. Being aware of this, we examined the results 
of a number of research studies on this question. With the assistance of 
facultv members of the University of Toronto, and of the Department of 
Education, we compared the success of certain students at the end of the 
first year of a university course with the standing reported for the same 
students on the upper school examinations, and also with the marks, based 
on internal school examinations, reported bv the principals of their schools. 
The results agreed with those reported for other similar studies: the pre- 
dictive value of the upper school examination marks (in terms of success 
in the first year at universit)) is quite low, and it varies greatly from one 
subject to another. Moreover, although the internal school examination 
marks also have a low predictive \alue, they were at least as satisfactory', 
for the group we considered, as the marks obtained, at considerable efiFort 
and expense, in the upper school examinations. In some cases they were 
more satisfactory. It is evident that success at the university' is only partly 
dependent upon previous school achievement, and that an undue emphasis 
or reliance upon previous academic achievement as a guide to a student's 
prospects in university' studies is largelv unwarranted. 

81. The evidence makes it quite apparent that future success in industr\'. 
commerce, or the professions is partlv determined, perhaps in some cases 
mainlv determined, bv factors other than academic achievement as measured 
by the traditional school examinations. Further, the evidence supports the 
conclusion that estimates based upon internal school examinations may be 

'Scottish Education Department, Secondary Education, Edinburgh: His Majesty's 
Stationery Office. 1947, p. 44. 


quite as valid and useful as those based upon external written examinations. 
As stated in the Scottish report on secondary education: 

The results of research and the experience of examining bodies show that teachers 
are, as a rule, very accurate in placing tlieir pupils in an order of merit; indeed, 
we are satisfied that in this respect the teacher's grading is more trustworthy 
than any other.' 

82. Naturally, these results cast doubt upon the validity of the traditional 
practice of using examination results as the sole criterion determining pro- 
motion from grade to grade and from institution to institution. They suggest 
that in determining promotion it is advisable to take other factors as well 
as examination results into consideration and to assess growth in all aspects 
of development. However, a good case can be made for the use of examina- 
tions, particularly internal school examinations, to facilitate guidance rather 
than to determine progress. Under an ideal scheme, a pupil would come 
under continual educational guidance; examinations would do no more than 
reveal his achievements and aptitudes, in order that he might be assisted 
in the choice of courses appropriate to his abilities and needs. 


83. In the light of our discussion of the advantages and disadvantages 
of examinations, and in view of the nature and purposes of education at 
each stage of the educational system, it will be evident that the type of 
examination considered most suitable and the use to be made of examination 
results wiU be different in the different stages. With regard to the elementary 
and secondary school stages, which can in this connection be considered 
together, we recommend 

(a) that, in nursery schools and kindergartens, no school examinations, 
internal or external, be employed; 

(b) that, in elementary and secondary schools, no system of formal, 
eocternal school examinations be established; 

(c) that internal school examinations or tests be employed in determin- 
ing progress in elementary and secondary schools; 

(d) that no general certificate or diploma be established to mark the 
completion of the elementary school programme; 

(e) that a Secondary School Graduation Diploma be awarded to each 
student who successfully completes the secondary school pro- 

(/) that the Secondary School Graduation Diploma 

(i) be issued by the local education authority concerned; 

( ii ) show the name and location of the secondary school attended 

by the pupil; 
(iii) show the nature and type of courses taken and standing 

nbid., pp. 44-45. 


obtained in the final two years of the secondary school pro- 

84. In junior colleges, where speciaUzation along academic or vocational 
lines is the major aim, it is necessary that uniform standards be maintained. 
It is precisely at this point that internal school examinations are weakest: 
standards inevitably vary from school to school, indeed from teacher to 
teacher within a school; and the marks awarded cannot be directly com- 
pared. School marks may be "scaled" to secure a uniform standard, but this 
can be done only if some external criterion is available, and generally this 
is not the case. In our opinion, therefore, there is a need at this stage for a 
system of external written examinations, combined with internal school 
examinations. Accordingly we recommend 

( a ) that a system of annual, uniform, external examinations for entrance 
to junior colleges be established; 

(b) that the Minister of Education establish a Joint Junior College 
Entrance Examination Board, to be charged with the duty of super- 
vising the conduct of these entrance examinations. 

It is essential that the fundamental purpose of "entrance" examinations be 
clearly understood. They are not "leaving" examinations, marking the suc- 
cessful completion of a stage of education, but "entrance" examinations, 
permitting successful candidates to enter a new stage of education. They 
are, in fact, qualifying examinations, designed to select those individuals 
who, in their chosen field, have demonstrated competence to undertake a 
specialized type of education in junior college. Students will, of course, 
normally sit for the junior college entrance examination during the last term 
of their secondary school programme; but this examination will be com- 
pletely distinct from the internal school examinations upon which the award 
of a Secondary School Graduation Diploma will be based. The Diploma 
marks the completion of secondary school; it will not qualify for entrance 
to junior college. 

85. We recommend, further, 

that promotion from year to year luithin a junior college course and the 
awarding of a junior college graduation diploma be based upon the 
results of internal school examinations. 
Thus, the "promotion" examinations within each junior college will be set 
and marked by the staff of the school. However, they will also be "selective" 
examinations, in the sense that only those students who demonstrate compe- 
tence will be promoted. A student who, in the opinion of the staff, success- 
fully completes a junior college course will be awarded a diploma by the 
local education authority concerned, upon recommendation by the principal 
of the junior college. The diploma will indicate the course taken and the 
standing attained. As there will be two possible terminal points in the junior 
college programme, we favour the establishment of two diplomas. Ac- 
cordingly, we recommend 


(a) that a Junior College Graduation Diploma be awarded, on applica- 
tion, to students success fulhj completing the first two years of a 
junior college course; 
{b) that a Junior College Honour Graduation Diploma be awarded to 
students successfully completing a three-year junior college course; 
(c) that Junior College Graduation Diplomas 

(i) be issued by the local education authority concerned; 
(ii) show the name and location of the junior college attended by 

the student; 
(iii) show the course taken and standing obtained. 

86. External school examinations will presumably be required also for 
entrance to universit^^^ The reasons for this are the same as those previously 
stated in the case of entrance to junior colleges. Since the junior college 
represents a terminal as well as an intermediate stage of education, and 
since not all courses will be directed toward university entrance, we cannot 
see how junior college graduation and university entrance requirements can 
be made identical. A forced union, or a process of equation, could very well 
be disastrous to both; or at least it might be satisfactory to neither. We 
prefer to leave the junior colleges relatively imhampered in their develop- 
ment and operation, and to have a body, such as a Joint University Entrance 
Examination Board, fix university entrance requirements and conduct uni- 
versity entrance examinations. Students who wish to proceed to university 
will, of course, take the university entrance examinations required; but the 
results will not determine the granting of a Junior College Graduation 
Diploma, nor will the latter necessarily provide entrance to university. Upon 
the matter of universit)^ entrance requirements and examinations, however, 
we cannot make specific recommendations since they are not within our 
terms of reference. 

87. We have implied that the responsibility^ for entrance requirements 
and entrance examinations should be placed on the junior colleges and 
universities, not on the schools of the preceding stage or on the Department 
of Education. The respective examination boards may prefer an accrediting 
system rather than "entrance" examinations, or they may prefer a combina- 
tion of both; but the responsibility would remain as we have suggested. 
This is essential if the aims we have stated are to be realized. Even with 
this system, care will have to be exercised to ensure that entrance examina- 
tions and requirements of junior colleges do not dominate the work of the 
new secondary schools, which would make it extremely difiicult to realize 
the purpose of secondary education as we have defined it. Similarlv, it 
would be regrettable if the work of the junior colleges were dominated by 
the entrance requirements of the universities. We strongly suggest that the 

^As university education is outside the terms of our reference, we wish to state that 
our recommendations are not intended to affect the right of each university to determine 
the requirements for entrance to its courses. 


Department of Education, entrance examination boards, and other edu- 
cational authorities, give serious consideration to the whole question of the 
purpose, type, and scope of external examinations in order that the true 
purposes of the schools may not be defeated through undue emphasis upon 
the preparation of candidates to meet the entrance requirements of a higher 
stage of education. 

88. As the training in technical institutes and in the apprenticeship 
system will be highly specialized, admission to their courses should, in our 
opinion, be restricted to tliose candidates who have demonstrated their 
aptitude for, and ability to profit from, such training. Progress should be on 
a selective basis, and only those students who achieve success should be 
promoted. We recommend 

(a) that each technical institute and apprenticeship board be given full 
control, subject to the approval of the Minister of Education, over 
its admissions and entrance requirements, examinations and pro- 
motions, and the awarding of its diplomas or certificates; 

( b ) that, upon successful completion of a course, a student be awarded 
a certificate or diploma indicating the nature and ejctent of the 
course taken and the standing obtained. 

89. We mentioned earlier the importance of reporting regularly to 
parents upon a child's progress in school. At one time, these reports were 
based largely upon the results of written examinations. They now include 
information concerning attitudes, interests, and work habits. Not only do 
such reports inform the parent, but they also assist the student to appraise 
himself. They encourage the teacher to study each student, and thsy enable 
the home and the school to co-operate in assisting the pupil. Appraising and 
reporting student progress is, therefore, an essential part of the programme 
of each school. Accordingly, we recommend 

(a) that the present departmental regulations, requiring that a report 
on pupil progress be made to parents each school term, be con- 

(b) that such progress reports to parents indicate the pupiVs all-round 
achievements, not only the results of his written examinations. 

Student Counselling 

90. The purpose of student counselling is to assist the child to evaluate 
his own capabilities and disabilities, to secure information concerning edu- 
cational and occupational opportunities, and to make wise choices. Without 
it, a child may well pursue an uncharted course and meander through 
school undirected by any clear vision of a goal. Assisted by it, he may 
select a goal and chart a profitable course. 

91. Teachers have always counselled and assisted their students, gener- 
ally informally and more or less successfully. It may well be asked if a 
continuance of this practice is not suflBcient. Under the conditions of httle 



more than a iieneration ago, it mav well have been sufEcient. But the 
occupational world has become very complex; our schools ofiFer not one 
course, but a wide variety of courses; and the aims of education have 
changed. Under such circumstances, it is too much to expect young people 
to make wise choices unaided, and to expect the teacher, without assistance, 
to provide tlie necessary counselling and information, particularly when he 
may teach not a single group of boys and girls but a single subject to a 
ver\' large number of classes. Moreover, the responsibility of the teacher has 
been broadened to include assistance in all aspects of growth. As the 
educational circumstances become more complex, the need for a special and 
more systematic arrangement for counselling becomes evident. In its de- 
\'elopment, the importance of retaining the intimate pupil-teacher relation- 
ship must always be kept in mind. 

92. In nursery schools, kindergartens, and the new elementary school, 
counselling will be almost whollv the task of the teacher. Some expert 
assistance will be needed in the detection, diagnosis, and treatment of cases 
of maladjustment. This should be secured by the teacher from the health 
service and child guidance clinic. But, in the main, counselling at this 
stage can adequately, and perhaps best, be given by the teacher. The 
arrangement of junior and senior divisions provides him with a period of 
three years with the same group of children, and thus an ample opportunity 
to study and assist each child. The problems met at this level will not be 
concerned with occupational or vocational guidance, but it is essential that 
the information and records collected by the teacher be kept in order and 
made available to teachers at a later stage. At least a substantial beginning 
should be made in the compiling of comprehensive and continuing records. 
By the end of the elementary school, suflBcient information should have 
been collected to be of in\'aluable assistance in the classification of students 
at the secondary school stage and in the arrangement of suitable pro- 
grammes of study. Accordinglv we recommend 

(a) that, in the stage of elementary education, student counselling be 
the responsibility of the home-room teacher, tvith such expert 
assistance as may be necessary from personnel of health services 
and child guidance clinics; 

(b) that a uniform, individual, cumulative form for recording data 
relating to the progress of a pupil through all stages of his edu- 
cation be authorized by the Minister of Education; 

(c) that, in elementary schools, the information for the cumulative 
record be entered by the home-room teacher. 

93. In the new secondary schools, student counselling will continue to 
be laro;ely the responsibility of the home-room teacher, but his endeavours 
should be supplemented by the services of specially trained personnel. The 
period in secondary school will be a terminal stage for a very large number 
of students, each of whom, before entering a field of employment, will need 


considerable occupational information. A student should also be provided 
with information concerning his aptitudes, occupational fitness, etc., to 
enable him to choose wisely. In addition, since the programme of the second- 
ary school will be arranged to permit exploration along academic and 
vocational lines, students will need assistance in the selection of courses 
suited to their interests and needs. Under tliese circumstances, in our opinion, 
appointment to the staff of each secondary school of at least one teacher 
specially qualified to counsel students is warranted. Home-room teachers 
should, of course, consult and co-operate with the counsellor. 

94. Another task of the counsellor will be the maintenance of continuing 
records of students and of graduates in employment. Combined with this 
will be placement services for new graduates, and possibly also for graduates 
of earlier years. It is not intended that the full responsibility for placement 
and follow-up should be placed upon the school. This would mean a dupli- 
cation of the efforts of the National Employment Service. But the responsi- 
bilitv of the school toward a student does not end on his graduation; and 
school authorities may gain most helpful information concerning the value 
and effectiveness of various aspects of their programme through a study of 
the careers of graduates. We have in mind that the schools, through teachers 
and counsellors, should assist by sharing in the placement of graduates and 
making follow-up studies of graduates' experiences. In this way, they can 
effectively assist students, employers, and themselves, and thus more fully 
discharge their responsibility for the all-round development of each child. 

95. We therefore recommend 
that, in secondary schools, 

(i) counselling continue to be a responsibility of the home-room 

(ii) specially qualified counsellors be appointed to the staff, and be 
charged with responsibility for vocational guidance and for sup- 
plementing the efforts of home-room teachers; 

(iii) individual cumulative records be continued, and include informa- 
tion relating to aptitudes and to occupational interests and fitness; 

(iv) information relating to occupations, including the professions and 
the educational requirements thereof, be made available to each 

( v) school authorities co-operate in the provision of placement services 
and in follow-up studies of graduates. 

96. At the stage of further education, students will have selected the 
specialized courses they wish to pursue; they will be more mature and 
better informed; and the need for the full programme of counselling will no 
longer exist. Nevertheless, there will be a continuing need to provide, 
especially in junior colleges, occupational information and assessment of 
special aptitudes and abilities. Naturally, this will include information and 
advice concerning further education, along academic and technical lines, 


in universities, technical institutes, and in apprenticeship training. It will 
also include placement services and follow-up studies of graduates. At this 
stage, specially qualified teachers should be appointed and given responsi- 
bihty for counselling services. We recommend 
that, in junior collegs, 
(i) specially qualified counsellors be appointed to the staff, and be 

charged with responsibility for all student counselling; 
(ii) individual cumulative records be continued; 

(iii) information relating to occupations, including semi-prof essioruil 
and professional, and the requisite educational qualifications there- 
of, be made available to each student; 
(iv) the school authorities, through the counsellor, co-operate in the 
provision of placement services and in follow-up studies of gradu- 
97. Although we recognize the need for counselling services in our 
schools, and are convinced of their value, we are more than a little dis- 
quieted by the prevalence of a naive belief in their universal eflScacy, and 
bv the tendency, on the part of some teachers, to transfer to the counsellor 
all responsibility for assisting and advising students. It must be recognized 
that counselling services in schools will not answer all the questions and 
solve all the problems of the students and of the school. Nor is it possible, 
or advisable, to transfer to the special counsellor all the duties and responsi- 
bilities of the teacher in relation to counselling, which is a special service 
intended to supplement, not to supplant, the work of the teacher. It is not 
intended to weaken the relationship between the teacher and the pupil. The 
assistance which can be rendered through counselling is definitely limited. 
There are two reasons for this. Firstly, the choices made are ultimately the 
responsibility of the child and his parents, not of the school and counsellor. 
Secondly, the predictive value of any of the measures which are available 
at present, or are likely to be developed in the immediate future, is so low 
that definite and specific direction cannot be given toward any one avenue 
or occupation. Perhaps fortunately, the results for any particular student are 
seldom conclusive; in most cases they are indicative only. Hence, the task 
of the counsellor is to place the information, and his interpretation of it, 
before the pupil and his parents and, when requested, to assist them in 
making their decision. 




1. Before proceeding to a discussion of our suggested school programme, 
it will be useful to review briefly some of the weaknesses of the programme 
as it exists today, although to do so is to invite misinterpretation. In pointing 
out defects and suggesting changes, we may give the impression that many 
of the present practices in our schools are without value. Nothing could be 
further from the truth. Much in the schools is worthy of praise and preser- 
vation. While at no time have there been revolutionary changes, neither has 
there been stagnation; there is ample evidence that over the years there has 
been steady improvement in staffing, in curriculum, and in courses of study. 
A most heartening sign is the general lack of complacency on the part of 
all concerned with the operation of our schools and an evident desire to 
continue the improvement of our educational system. 

2. The major criticisms registered with us in regard to the school pro- 
gramme were concerned with the final two years of the elementary school 
and with the work of the secondary school in general. But, while admitting 
the vahdity of these criticisms, we must not overlook the fact that some 
specific problems and the general feeling of discontent in relation to the 
present programme have their source in the extension of general education 
to all children. To educate a select few is a relatively simple matter; to 
educate all children, with their wide diversity in abilities and interests, is 
a complex task. Experience has served to develop an appreciation of the 
immensity of the task and to clarify the nature of the associated problems. 
Actual progress in solving them has, however, been slow, hampered by an 
economic depression of unprecedented severity, and by two World Wars. 

3. The principle of education for all children has been put into effect 
mainly through the laws relating to compulsory school attendance. The 
effectiveness of these is a matter of great importance. Information relating 
to school attendance and "years of schooling" was collected at the 1941 
census of Canada, and some of the pertinent data are given in the following 
two Tables. 





4. In Table 1, data are given relating to the number of "y^ars of school- 
ing" reported for the age group 20-24 years in Ontario. The figures for 
rural and urban areas are listed separately. This age group has been selected 
because tliose in it had an opportunity, by age 20, to complete the elementary 
and secondar)' school courses, and because the attendance Acts were in 
force before the members of the group entered school. It will be seen that 
approximately 10 per cent of the total group attended school for less than 
ten years. Unsatisfactor)^ as the position is for lu^ban centres, it is very much 
worse for rural areas. For example, two-thirds or more of the rural group 
attended school for less than ten years. 


Years of Schooling (Ontario) Rural and Urban'' 
Age Group: 20-24 Years, 1941 

Age Group 


Years of Schooling 








17 -f 






45,793 _ 















"Dominion Bureau of Statistics, Eighth Census of Canada, 1941, Population Bulletin, 
N'o. ,C-5. (These data are the latest available.) 

Includes persons with years of schooling not stated. 

5. Table 2 gives the attendance for each age group, by single years of 
age. Figures for rural and urban areas are again shown separately. It will 
be seen that children in rural areas tend to begin school at a later age, and 
to leave school at an earlier age, than children in urban areas. Most notice- 
able and significant is the fact that from age 14 onward children leave 
school in ever increasing numbers, especially in rural areas. This supports 
the criticism that too many children spend too few years in school to be 
fitted to discharge fully their obligations as citizens. 

6. But this is not the complete story. Nearly two-thirds of all children 
were leaving the elementary' school without obtaining high school entrance 
standing.^ A student might attend an elementary school for ten years with- 
out completing the work of grade VIII. The most recent figures relating to 
pupil progress through school in Ontario are given in Table 3: of 100 pupils 
who begin school life, 67 pass the high school entrance examination, and 
61 enter grade IX. The decrease in the proportion of children at successive 
educational levels is marked. The wastage may well be considered excessive 
and a cause for grave concern. 

'These examinations, formerly prepared and set by the Department of Education for 
students in ^rade VIII, were discontinued in 1949. 



7. Of primary importance in relation to curricula and courses of study 
is the effect of the complete break between the programmes for elementary 
and secondary' schools. Lack of comprehensive planning in this field has 

School Attendanxe in Ontario — Rural and Urban Schools — 1941" 










at School 

at School 


at School 

at School 













































































































































































































































































































"Dominion Bureau of Statistics, Eighth Census of Canada, 1941, Population Bulletin 
No. C-5. (These data are the latest available.) 

accentuated the difference between elementary and secondary education. 
Although the programme for elementary schools includes a thoughtful state- 
ment of general and specific aims, the academic secondary school programme 
contains, in this connection, only some unrelated lists of aims for particular 


courses. A ver)' brief statement of this kind is given for each type of vocation- 
al school, and, in general, for the vocational courses. A clear statement of 
aims for each stage of the educational system, which would assist in the 
co-ordination of the various stages, is greatly to be desired. 

S. In provision for individual differences there is a marked contrast 
between elementary and secondary schools, both in prescribed programmes 
and in practice. In the former schools, the programmes of studies have 
specifically recognized the problems created by these differences and per- 

Pupil Progress Through Entire School Life** 

School Level 


Begin school life 


Pass high school entrance 


Enter grade IX 


Enter grade X 


Enter grade XI 


Complete grade XII 


Complete grade XIII 


Enter university 


"Report of the Minister of Education, Province 
of Ontario, 1948, p. 107. 

mit necessary adaptations in content of courses. The practices in these 
schools, with a few exceptions in the case of weaker teachers, are at present 
fairly satisfactory. With the changes in organization and procedure which 
we recommend, we are confident that the needs of pupils will be met, as 
far as practicable, in the new elementary schools. In secondary schools, 
until the school year 1950-51, one general course was provided for grade 
IX, with certain exceptions for vocational schools, to be followed by all 
pupils. In grades X, XI, and XII, however, there are a number of alternative 
courses (e.g. general, industrial or agricultural, home economics, com- 
mercial, art), within each of which the student may select at least one 
optional subject and, in the general course, four or five. To this extent, 
there is provision for individual differences; but the courses of study are 
rigidly prescribed in detail, and teachers have little opportunity to adapt 
the content to the ability, capacity, and interests of students. This may not 
have been the intention— the occasional use of the word "suggested" would 
tend to indicate otherwise— but the general impression gained is that of a 
rigidly prescribed course. 

9. This impression is strengthened by an examination of practice. In 
manv secondary schools there appears to be no svstematic attempt to adapt 
the courses to the needs of students, even though manv teachers sincerely 
attempt to do so, and though administrative arrangements in some schools 
])erinit homogeneous grouping of pupils, the organization of special classes. 


and other means designed to meet problems of individual differences. 
Another omission, unavoidable though it may be under existing circum- 
stances, is equallv serious: except in secondar\' schools in large urban 
centres, neither alternative courses nor a \ariety of optional subjects are 
offered. The position in regard to the teaching of classics, for example, was 
brought forcibly to our attention in Brief 120, submitted by the Department 
of Classics, University of Toronto. Many subjects of the general course and 
of the vocational courses are in the same position. The situation mav be 
thus sinnmarized: numerous optional subjects are listed on the prescribed 
curricuknn; but, in many schools, only a few are included in the programme. 
This fact is borne out by the middle school and upper school examination 
statistics for June, 1948,^ which show that relatively few students took anv 
examination subjects other than English, histor)', mathematics, science, 
French, and Latin. 

10. It might well be argued that, in practice, there is little more adapta- 
tion and selection of courses under our present programme than there was 
in the grammar schools of our forefathers. This "choice" of subjects suggests 
only one conclusion: in Ontario, as elsewhere, the work of the secondare 
schools is dominated by requirements for entrance to the university. For the 
few who continue their education at university this is perhaps not un- 
reasonable; but for the vast majority of students who, as shown by Table 3, 
complete their formal education during, or at the end of, the secondar\' 
school stage, the effect is bad. The needs of members of the latter group 
are so different from those of the former that no common course, crowned 
bv uniform external school examinations, can do justice to both. 

11. We have noted evidence in the schools of attempts to measure indi- 
N'idual differences, to studv child behaviour and de\'elopment, and to 
conduct experiments and research. That these attempts are not more general 
may be attributed to the fact that energies have been expended in meeting 
the demands of a rapidly expanding educational system and in providing 
at least a minimum of education for all children. Nor have the economic 
and social conditions of the last two decades encouraged the launching of 
new projects or the provision of more than bare essentials. Nevertheless, our 
educational system is now at a stage where local education authorities and 
teachers must more systematicallv initiate, and assist in, the study of child 
development and individual differences. They must develop research and 
experimentation, so that the educational svstem mav be continuously im- 


12. It is convenient to consider briefly, at this point, the general question 
as to whether bovs and girls should be educated separately or together. 
The general policv in Great Britain and elsewhere in Europe has been to 

'PepnrI o' the Minister nf Education. Ontario. 1948. p. 193. 


educate the sexes separately, more particularly at the secondary school level, 
although in some countries separate provisions are made in elementary 
schools also. On this continent, co-education became firmly established dur- 
ing the nineteenth century and is the general practice in all stages of the 
educational system, with the exceptions mainly in private schools. 

13. In newer communities, and in areas of widely dispersed population, 
the segregation of boys from girls in school is not economically feasible. 
Indeed, it is practicable in very few parts of our province outside the larger 
urban centres. Whether or not it is desirable has never been satisfactorilv 
determined. No thorough study of the effects of either co-education or 
segregation on the educational progress and personal development oi 
students seems to have been made. Experience has demonstrated, however, 
that co-education has produced none of the dire results which were pre- 
dicted at the time of its inception on this continent. Since there do not seem 
to be any marked and sustained differences between the sexes in general 
mental ability and intellectual development, we believe that it is not 
necessary to provide distinct curricula for boys and girls. On the other hand, 
standards and aims will differ in physical and vocational education, and the 
content of the courses mav differ in social or civic education. But pro- 
grammes specifically adapted to meet their particular needs may be selected 
by boys and girls from the optional courses in the new secondary schools, 
and from the highly specialized courses of the new junior colleges. This 
differentiation can be provided in the same school, some courses being 
taken in common and others separately. From the point of view of adminis- 
tration and cost, therefore, the weight of evidence is in favour of co- 

14. Thus it would seem that the question of the desirability or otherwise 
of co-education must be determined on the basis of its effect on social, 
emotional, and moral development. Regarding this effect, we could find no 
direct evidence. Some claim that co-education prevents the development of 
some desirable feminine qualities in girls and some virile qualities in boys. 
Others deny this, and claim that co-educational schools have a more whole- 
some atmosphere than those where there is segregation. Apart from this 
conflict of opinion, it is generally accepted that co-education has had no 
positive harmful effects. It also seems natural to educate boys and girls 
together: thev' grow up together in the home; and they will associate 
together after school hours. It seems probable that they will make the 
necessarv social adjustments and achieve their natural developments better 
without segregation. 

15. Accordingly we recommend 

that the general practice of educating hoys and girls together in our 

publicly supported schools be continued. 
We suggest, however, that local education authorities be permitted to make 
provision for segregation of the sexes, if thev desire to do so and if segrega- 


tion is economically feasible. Such experimental variations will give oppor- 
tunities for the study and investigation of the relative merits and demerits 
of segregation and co-education. 

The Curriculum 

16. We do not propose to outline in detail the curricula and courses of 
study for the reorganized educational system. We do not think it desirable 
for us to attempt this task; and we are convinced that, if our schools are 
to meet individual needs, the curricula and courses of study should be sug- 
gestive rather than narrowly prescriptive, and should be developed through 
co-operative effort by all who are concerned with the educational develop- 
ment of the child. This method of procedure is necessary if we are to 
promote in our schools that spirit of initiative, experiment, and co-operation 
which should characterize education in a democracy. 

17. We consider it desirable, however, to provide some guidance to diose 
whose responsibility it will be to formulate the detailed arrangement of 
curricula and courses of study. Accordingly, we indicate the general nature 
of a programme which we believe will realize the aims of education which 
we have outlined. In doing so, we have considered the educational system 
as a whole; we have excepted only the programmes of special education and 
the adaptations of the programme for those elementary schools in which 
French will be a subject of study and language of instruction and communi- 
cation with the permission of the Minister of Education, to which special 
attention will be given later. Within these limits, we present the broad 
outlines of curricula for each stage of the reorganized educational system. 


18. At this level, in particular, education in school supplements training 
in the home, and close co-ordination should be effected. Formal education 
for very young children can be supported only if it serves: 

(a) to supplement the opportunities for development which are found 
in the good home and, where necessary, to remedy deficiencies of 
the home environment; and 

(b) to establish a firm foundation for the continuing partnership be- 
tween home and school. 

19. A major aim is to enable the child at an early age to become less 
dependent. This will be secured through the establishment of effective 
personal and social habits and the inculcation of attitudes of acceptance, 
co-operation, and responsibility. More specifically, the child should acquire 
the basic routines of health and behaviour, gain control to some extent over 
his actions and conduct, and find pleasure in the companionship of his 
fellows and securit)^ in the school environment. This is predominantly a 
"socializing" period, with programmes consisting mainly of activities de- 


signed to develop acceptable behaviour patterns. In addition, however, the 
training in kindergarten, whether it is a continuation of the training in 
nursery school or an initial school experience, must be designed to serve 
as an introduction, through informal activities, to the more formal instruc- 
tion of the early grades of the elementary school. 

20. There are no formal curricula and courses of study for this level, if 
we interpret these in the usual sense with reference to subjects and subject- 
matter content. The programme directly or indirectly includes "subjects" 
such as health and physical education, English, social studies, natural 
science, arithmetic, music, and art. But instruction in subject-matter is in- 
direct rather than formal, and learning seems, at first glance, to be incidental 
to an activity carried on for some other purpose. In arithmetic, for example, 
the concept of time may be developed in connection with special activities 
which occur at difFerent times of the day and year. Language development, 
as another instance, is attained through imitation, by using stories and con- 
versations; it results, incidentally, in the beginning of an appreciation of 
both poetry and prose. The nature and extent of the programme are iudi- 
cated in the following outHne of major aims: 

( 1 ) To assist in the development of fundamental habits of living through 
the acquisition of proper health habits associated with rest, play and 
exercise, eating, and toilet practices. 

(2) To develop and improve the use of language through listening to 
stories told by the teacher, relating personal experiences, looking at 
and discussing pictures, and communicating with fellow-pupils in play 
and other school situations; and gradually to develop "reading readi- 
ness" through these and similar exercises and experiences. 

( 3 ) To assist informally in the growth of the number sense through games 
and special activities appropriate to particular times of the day and 

(4) To introduce aesthetic training by learning and appreciating simple 
tunes and rhythms; and, in art, by enlarging the appreciation and 
thoughtful use of diflFerent kinds of materials. 

(5) To assist moral and spiritual development through morning prayer, 
sacred songs, verse speaking, and Bible stories. 

(6) To provide an environment in which the child may develop a feeling 
of security and gain a sense of "belonging", so that he becomes less and 
less dependent on the teacher. 

(7) To develop in the chUd a feeUng of adequacy in meeting ordinary 
situations appropriate to his age by mastering the use of, and gaining 
confidence in his ability to handle, selected play equipment. 

( 8 ) To teach the child to work and play with others of his own age in an 
acceptable manner; to respect the rights of others and to await his 
turn; to select materials for games and activities, to use them, and 
then to replace them in their storage places. 


21. Naturally, no formal instruction in subjects or subject-matter content 
should be given. The programme, while organized, should be largely in- 
formal, and the periods, divided into routine and play, should be brief. The 
former are designed to develop eflBcient habits and to establish attitudes 
of acceptance, co-operation, and responsibility in routines such as those 
relating to the cloakroom, washing, toilet, meals, and rest. The latter, 
through self-directed play in the classroom or on the playground and 
through the organized activities of the group, are designed to develop 
physical and social skills, attitudes, and interest in other children and enjoy- 
ment of their company, so as to promote proper growth of personality. One 
additional aim will be the gradual preparation of the child, particularly in 
language and arithmetic, for entrance to the first grade of the elementar\^ 
school. But, as stated earlier, little is gained and much may be lost through 
the premature introduction of formal instruction. 


22. The elementary schools in the proposed reorganization will normally 
enrol children of ages 6 to 12. The cuniculum will be organized on a six- 
grade basis, divided into junior and senior divisions each of three years' 
duration. It will constitute the first part of what is generally known as 
formal education; but, although it is the basis of all later education, it 
should not be regarded merely as a foundation. On the contrary, its puq^oses 
must be defined primarily in terms of the special needs and problems of 
this stage of the child's development. 

23. In the junior division of the elementary school, a main aim will be 
to complete the gradual transition from the informal activities of the 
nursery school and kindergarten, or of the home, to the formal procedures 
followed in teaching the elements of reading, writing, and arithmetic. 
Hence, the methods and activities of the kindergarten will be followed in 
at least part of the first year of the junior division. In any case, formal 
education will not begin before approximately age 6, at which time school 
attendance will be compulsory and on a full-day basis. By the end of the 
junior division, children will have had instruction in the elements of read- 
ing, writing, and arithmetic, and in the elementary skills of art and music; 
and they will have been introduced to those concepts of social studies and 
natural science within their range of comprehension. Much the same pro- 
gramme will be continued in the senior division of the elementary school, 
with adaptations to correspond to changes in the needs of children and 
their increasing maturity, and with emphasis upon the development and 
consolidation of the basic skills of our culture. In this connection, we should 
like to make clear that in the development of the basic skills of language 
and arithmetic there can be no half-measures; the child, within the limits of 
his abilitv, must master them. The need for this proficiency is generallv 
accepted. Unfortunatelv, experience has shown that its attainment may be 



gravely impeded and postponed by the pursuit of tasks and activities which 
are less pedestrian and more inunediately interesting to pupil and teacher 

24. We recommend 

that the curriculutn for the junior and senior divisions of the elementary 

school comprise English, social studies, arithmetic, natural science, music, 

art, physical and health education, and religious education.^ 

The allotment of time for the different subjects and the construction of 

time-tables we have not deemed to be within our province. These are 

matters for professional experts to determine. 

25. The aims of the curriculum of the elementarv school must include 
the follo\\'ing, in addition to the general aims we have stated earher: 

( 1 ) To develop those fundamental skills of language, arithmetic, art, and 
music, which are appropriate to the ages of the children. 

(2) To develop the child's appreciation of language, art, and music, and 
to develop his abiht}^ to think and express himself in these fields. 

(3) To develop attitudes and skills valuable to all citizens, and to v\dden 
the child's interest in, and his understanding of, his social and physical 

( 4 ) To train for healthful living, for the acquisition of proper health habits, 
and for physical development through suitable exercise. 

(5) To assist in the growth of a feeling of adequacy, through informal 
activities and experiences. 

(6) To aid in the growth of self -direction, self-control, and the abilit)' to 
engage in group activities which require planning by all members of 
the group. 

(7) To assist in spiritual development and in the inculcation of those 
Christian attitudes and ideals upon which our way of life is based. 

26. Learning in school is facilitated, and incidentally made much more 
interesting and enjoyable, when instructional procedures are based upon 
the routines nonnally followed by children in daily life. This is a natural 
method of learning. Children generally play or work in a group of approxi- 
mately the same age. Their play routine is not haphazard but, for children, 
well ordered. The members of the group decide through discussion what 
thev wish to do; they develop plans for achieving their aims; and they 
assign some part of the undertaking to each child. Today, much of the 
instruction in an elementarv' school is based upon procedures that do not 
differ fundamentally from the natural play routine of children. The pupils' 
concentration, energy, and inventiveness are most impressive: their be- 
haviour is in marked contrast v^th the Hstlessness and apathy frequentlv 
displaved by children in the classrooms of an earlier regime. It is true that 
the activities are controlled, directed, and frequently inspired, by the 

^A discussion of our proposals on Enjjlish. social studies, and religious education may 
he found in the next chapter. 


teacher, but the children accept the project as their own and, in carrying 
it out, display the zeal they normally do in play. Many of the "subjects" of 
the curriculum, such as reading, writing, arithmetic, and art, are part of the 
enterprise, although the children may not always realize that formal in- 
struction is being given. Through this extremely useful teaching method, 
a skilful teacher can attain many of the purposes of the curriculum, parti- 
cularly those associated with the skills of living and working together. But 
other aims cannot be fully attained through the use of this method alone: 
the fundamental skills of reading, writing, and arithmetic, for example, 
require more specific practice. And in some subjects, in which the content 
is arranged sequentially, the method may be extremely wasteful of the 
time of both teacher and pupils, especially in later stages of the educational 
system. Nevertheless, the principles of the project or enterprise method 
should be utilized as far as possible by the teacher in an elementary school. 
Additional and specific instruction may be required at any point. There is 
no single, infallible teaching method; each teacher must develop his own 
happy blend to attain the desired goals, in accordance with the abilities 
and needs of the children. Procedures must be adapted to allow pupils to 
proceed at their own rates of learning, and to provide for varying capabili- 
ties and individual differences. 


27. As stated earHer, the four years of secondary school, beginning at 
approximately age 12, will correspond to the period of early adolescence, 
will extend generally to the end of the period of compulsory school atten- 
dance, and will be, for many children, the final stage of formal education. 
For these reasons, general education will be emphasized in the new second- 
ary schools: English, social studies, physical and health education, and 
reHgious education or ethics will constitute the basic core for all years. In 
the first and second years, all subjects will be obligatory; ^ in the third and 
fourth years, however, there will be elective subjects introductory to special- 
ized academic training, and exploratory vocational courses. The varied in- 
terests and capacities of pupils will he met through adaptations of the 
content of all subjects and, in the third and fourth years, through selection 
of optional subjects. Each student will be assisted to select the most suitable 
programme. The curriculum of the new secondary school will, of necessity, 
be diversified and flexible. 

28. The needs of those students for whom secondary education will be 
terminal constitute a special problem. Within the Umits of their individual 
capacities, such students will, upon completion of the secondary school 

'In addition, however, some local education authorities may wish to experiment with 
"try-out courses", each of a few weeks' duration, in the optional subjects of the sub- 
sequent two years, in order that students through such brief introductory courses may 
he in a better position to select wisely tlieir optional subjects in tlie third and fourth 


stage, have secured a general, well rounded education. Their programme 
will have included obligatory subjects as well as optional courses designed 
to reveal special academic and vocational aptitudes and abilities. But some- 
thing more is needed. This will be provided by allowing such students, in 
their third and fourth years, to devote to a particular vocational field the 
total time normallv allotted to all optional subjects. The purpose of this is 
to permit a limited or introductory specialization in such a field. Thus, even 
though these students lack advanced specialized training, they will be 
sufficiently prepared to permit entry into one of the positions in industry 
and commerce that require a relatively short period of specialized training 

29. For those students in this group who are unable to profit from the 
regular courses because of limited capacity or for other reasons, a further 
adaptation of the programme in the third and fourth years of secondary 
school will be necessary. We suggest that a local education authority be 
permitted to introduce a practical programme of trade training for them, 
subject to the approval of the Minister. The establishment of such a pro- 
gramme must be feasible, and be justified by the number of students avail- 
able. The curriculum, as well as the content of the courses, should be 
adapted for the purpose in accordance with the needs of the students, and 
most of a student's time should be devoted to practical training in the vo- 
cational and allied subjects related to the selected trade. The programme 
could include, for example, training in skills related to homemaking, and 
training in trades such as barbering, hairdressing, decorating, furniture re- 
pair, tailoring, dressmaking, plastering, and bricklaying. Graduates of such 
trade courses might, at age 16, enter employment directly upon completion 
of the secondary school programme, continue their training in a polytech- 
nical institute, or enter apprenticeship. In the latter, we suggest, credit 
could be given the graduates for completion of the trade courses in second- 
ary schools and polytechnical institutes. 

30. The specffic aims of the programme of the secondary school will 

(1) The acquisition, through the continuation and extension of general 
education, of knowledge, attitudes, and skills, valuable to all citizens. 

(2) The provision of a well rounded general education, together with 
limited specialization in a vocational field for those pupils who plan to 
leave school at age 16. 

(3) The adaptation of the content of obligatory subjects and the intro- 
duction of optional exploratory subjects to meet the varying capabilities 
and needs of pupils, to awaken interests, and to develop latent talent. 

(4) The provision of opportunities for exploration, from which pupils may 
derive educational and vocational direction. 

31. Most noticeable in the literature on optional courses and the adapta- 
tion of the content of obligatory and optional subjects, is a lack of under- 


standing of the purpose of such measures. To cite but one example, suflBcient 
thought is seldom given to the adaptation of content, although "hp-service" 
is paid to the need for it. Similarly, although arrangements are nearly al- 
ways made for optional subjects and courses in programmes prescribed b)' 
the central authority, the provision of instruction in these options is, in 
practice, left to the discretion of the local education authority. Such optional 
subjects tend to be "optional" only on the part of the board. Admittedly, 
any departure from a standard and common programme introduces admin- 
istrative difficulties and problems. Moreover, in schools of very low enrol- 
ment it is not economically feasible to provide a wide variety of options. 
Nevertheless, the validity and applicability of the general principles we 
have enunciated cannot be questioned. Therefore, in the interests of the 
students, requisite arrangements for optional subjects and for adaptations 
of the content of both core and optional subjects must be made to the fullest 
extent feasible. 

32. In making these arrangements, a division of responsibility between 
the central and local education authorities must be made. Unless a line is 
clearly drawn and the separate responsibilities are defined, confusion and 
lack of adequate educational opportunities must inevitably result. The 
responsibility of the central authority is, in our opinion, to specify the core 
and optional subjects which must be provided by each local education au- 
thority. In addition, the central authority must list other optional subjects 
which may be offered, subject to approval, by the local education authority. 
It is necessary, also, for the central authority to specify the maximum and 
minimum time which may be devoted to each of the optional subjects. 
Finally, the central authority must, in setting up the courses of study, out- 
line adaptations in the core and optional subjects calculated to meet the 
needs of pupils of below average, average, and above average ability. 

33. Rigid control by the central authority is not contemplated. On the 
contrary, we propose that, as quickly as is practicable, much of the control 
over curricula and courses of study be transferred to the local education 
authorities of the large units of administration which we recommend. How- 
ever, without a professionally c[ualified staff no local education authority 
could competently and efficiently discharge this additional task. Hence, we 
believe that it is not only desirable but essential that, during the transition 
period when our general recommendations are being implemented, the 
central authority should guide, direct, and approve the local adaptations 
of courses of stvidy. Subject to these safeguards, there should be a gradual 
transfer of responsibility from the central authority to local education au- 
thorities. For the present, and for the immediate future, it will be the 
responsibility of the local education authority to provide instruction in the 
prescribed core and optional subjects, including the adaptations thereof. 
In addition, a local education authority may, subject to the approval of the 
Minister, provide other optional subjects listed. Likewise, a local education 


authority may, subject to the approval of the Minister, introduce still other 
optional subjects or adapt the content of any optional subject. The purpose 
of tliese latter provisions is to permit a local education authority, where cir- 
cumstances warrant it, to introduce or adapt courses to meet special needs 
arising from local, economic, and geographical conditions. 

34. We suggest that tlie Minister encourage local initiative in the pro- 
vision of specific options not generally prescribed and in the adaptation of 
content to meet local needs. This initiative might well be extended, on an 
experimental basis and under tentative approval, to include special adapta- 
tions of the content of core and optional subjects to meet specific individual 
differences. While general direction may be given by the Minister, it will 
be within the classroom that the needs of individual students will actually 
become knovvTi, the appropriate course given, and appropriate methods of 
instruction employed. The rate and extent of the transfer to local education 
authorities of control over such interna as curricula and courses of study 
will depend partly on the success of the special adaptations mentioned 

35. We recommend 

that, for the first and second years of the secondary school curriculum, 
(i) the following subjects he obligatory for all students: English; social 
studies; general mathematics; general science, including agricul- 
tural science; physical and health education; home economics or 
general shop work; oral French or special courses in French;^ art; 
music; religious education or ethics; 

(ii) there be no optional subjects. 

36. We recommend 

that, for the third year of the secondary school curriculum, 
(i) the following subjects be obligatory for all students: English; social 
studies; general mathematics; general science, including agricul- 
tural science; physical and health education, including cadet train- 
ing for boys and its equivalent for girls; occupations; religious edu- 
cation or ethics; 
( ii ) a student be required to select, in addition, any three, and be per- 
mitted to select any four, of the following optional subjects: agri- 
culture; commercial work; home economics or general shop work; 
art or music, or art and music; Fretich or special courses in French; 
Latin or German or Spanish or Greek. 

37. We recommend 

that, for the fourth year of the secondary school curriculum, 
(i) the following subjects be obligatory for all students: English; social 
studies; physical and health education, including cadet training for 
boys and its equivalent for girls; occupations; religious education 
or ethics; 

^See Chapter XVII. 


(ii) a student he required to select, in addition, any jour, and he per- 
mitted to select any five, of the following optional subjects: general 
mathematics; general science or agricultural science; agriculture; 
commercial work; home economics or general shop work; art or 
music, or art and music; French or special courses in French;^ Latin 
or German or Spanish or Greek. 

38. Our opinion is that normally only three options should be selected 
in the third year and four in the fourth year. A student who is particularly 
able, academically or vocationally, should be granted permission by the 
principal to select an additional option, if it is considered that he can suc- 
cessfully undertake the extra work without prejudice to his achievement in 
the regular programme. We believe that an exceptionally able student might 
well be permitted to select a fifth option in the third year, and a sixth in 
tlie fourth year, although specific provision for this has not been made in 
the curriculum. Since such an arrangement will not be general, we propose 
that the decision be left to the discretion of the local principal and staff. 

39. Attention should be drawn to a difficulty which will frequently arise 
in arranging programmes for individual students in the fourth year. The 
content of certain subjects is sequential. Thus, in order to undertake certain 
fourth year options successfully, a student should have taken those options 
in the third year. But it is inevitable that some will wish to select, in the 
fourth year, an optional subject not studied in the third year. This may fre- 
quently create a problem in view of the encouragement given to exploration 
in various avenues and fields. Despite the administrative difficulties entailed, 
a student should be permitted, where it is feasible and the circumstances 
warrant it, to substitute, for a fourth year optional subject, a third year 
optional subject not previously taken. Consideration should also be given 
to the advisability of granting to a fourth year student who selects addi- 
tional optional subjects permission to choose some of these from third year 
options; but this is a matter for local decision. 

40. A similar variation in the method of selecting optional subjects 
should be allowed, as we stated earlier, for those students who have decided, 
before beginning their third year, that they will seek employment upon com- 
pletion of their secondary school programme. In this connection, attention 
should be paid to the possibility of introducing what is commonly known 
as a "school-work" programme, in which a student devotes part of his time 
to study in school and part to employment in some occupation. Such pro- 
grammes have some extremely valuable features, but their general history 
has not been encouraging. Difficulties arise in the administration of them, 
particularly when it involves co-operation among school authorities, organ- 
ized labour, and employers. Nevertheless, where local conditions are favour- 
able, much may be gained through the introduction of such programmes. 
The value is apparent, for example, in the case of students who have shown 

'See Chapter XVII. 


little interest, aptitude, or ability, during the first two years of secondary 
school, in the academic aspects of the school programme. 

41. In tlie third and fourth year curricula, we have listed "occupations" 
as an obligator)^ subject. It is not intended, however, that the content should 
be equal in extent to that of other courses such as English and social studies. 
Not more than one hour per week should be required for this subject. The 
aim of the course is to supplement and assist student counselling, to foster 
an interest in the occupational world, and to provide students with informa- 
tion concerning both educational and employment opportunities, in order 
that they may be assisted to make wise decisions with respect to further 
training and the selection of a vocational field. Thus, a student should be 
advised of the various courses offered in the secondary school and of their 
relation to further education and possible occupations; and he should be 
furnished with general information on occupations, particularly with refer- 
ence to the local situation. The course should include a study of desirable 
and undesirable personality traits and of the procedure generally followed 
in applying for positions. To secure integration, the occupations course 
should be given, if possible, by the person or persons responsible for other 
aspects of counselling. 

42. Our recommendation on the teaching of French in secondary schools 
means a departure from present practice and requires some explanation. 
We propose that either oral French or special courses in French be obliga- 
tory in the first and second years, and that French or special courses in 
French be optional in the third and fourth years. It is necessary to dis- 
tinguish between two courses to be offered in the first and second years: 
oral French is designed for those students who have not previously studied 
the language; special courses in French are designed for students who have 
attended elementary schools in which French is a subject of study and 
language of instruction and communication with the permission of the Min- 
ister of Education,^ or who have an equivalent knowledge of French gained 
by some other means. 

43. For various reasons, there can be no doubt about the value of study- 
ing French. We feel that English-speaking children in this province would 
benefit from a working knowledge of the French language. Their lives would 
thereby be enriched culturally and they would gain definite practical advan- 
tages. Many positions in the Federal Government Service and in the busi- 
ness world require a knowledge of English and French. But it is for the 
purpose of furthering understanding between the French-speaking and 
English-speaking citizens of this province that we have included a com- 
pulsory course in oral French in the curriculum of the first and second years 
of secondary school. We propose not an academic study of French literature, 
composition, and grammar, but the practice of conversational French. This 

^For our general discussion and recommendations on these schools, see Chapters 
XVI and XVII. 


will correspond to the opportunity which we have later proposed be ex- 
tended to French-speaking pupils who, in the elementary schools in which 
French is a subject of study and language of instruction and communication, 
will learn both Enghsh and French. 

44. A course which is more advanced than introductory oral French will 
be required for those students who have studied the language in elementary 
school. For tliis reason, we have hsted what we have termed special courses 
in French as an alternative to oral French. Although these special courses 
will be mainly for pupils who have received their elementary education in 
schools in which French is a subject of study and language of instruction 
and communication, they should be available for other pupils who can 
demonstrate abilit)' to profit from them. In other respects, the general pro- 
visions of the curriculum of the new secondary schools will be the same 
for all children. This is a departure from the present provisions, outlined 
in Circular 46, 1948,^ in which a special secondary school curriculum is 
established for students who have received their elementary education in 
"schools in which French is a subject of instruction with the approval of 
the Minister". In the present courses, six periods in grade IX and seven in 
grades X-XII, of a 40-period week, are devoted to English, and an equal 
amount of time to French. To gain additional time for the study of French 
a reduction is made in the time allotted to optional subjects of the cur- 
riculum. In our opinion, it is neither necessary' nor desirable to establish 
what is, in effect, a special curriculum for French-speaking pupils in the 
new secondary schools. If their elementary school course is adequate, such 
students should be able to undertake the regular programme with other 
students in secondary schools. Special courses in French will also be offered 
in junior colleges so that a French-speaking student may continue the study 
of his own language throughout the secondary school and junior college. 

45. To a considerable extent, the metliods of instruction employed in ele- 
mentary schools will be used also in the new secondary schools. It is essen- 
tial that there should not be a complete break, in either method of instruc- 
tion or programme, as a pupil advances from elementary to secondare' 
school. Since activities and direct experiences should predominate in the 
junior years of the secondary school, special rooms should be provided for 
those subjects which lend themselves to this type of treatment, and a group 
of obligatory subjects should be assigned to a "home-room" teacher. How- 
ever, the methods of the elementary school cannot be applied without 
change in the third and fourth years of the new secondary schools. By the 
end of the fourth year in secondary school, there should be a transition to 
the teaching methods used in junior college, which depend less on external 
motivation. There is no need to outline appropriate methods of instruction 
for the new secondary schools and junior colleges. Within limits, instruc- 

'Circular 46, Courses of Study and Examinations in Schools Attended by French- 
Speaking Pupils, issued by the authority of the Minister of Education, Ontario. 


tional procedures will vary according to their purpose, and will change 
from teacher to teacher. 


46. Students will normally complete secondary education at approx- 
imately age 16, and, providing they can pass the necessary entrance exam- 
inations, may continue in one of the courses of the stage of further educa- 
tion. Since most of those who continue will have selected their vocational 
field, we have planned the programmes of further education on the prin- 
ciple that specialization in a major academic or vocational field is the prime 
pm"pose of education at this stage. 

47. The lack of such a guiding principle in our present system has, in 
our opinion, led to confusion, duplication, and some waste of effort. Only 
a programme of specialized academic, vocational, and technical education 
will satisfy the varied needs and interests of students during this period. 
In such a programme there is no conflict between "cultural" and "vocational" 
education; the two aspects are complementary, not opposed. Each is essen- 
tial; to ignore either, or to enhance one at the expense of the other, is a 
serious error. 

48. Our discussion of the courses at the stage of further education is 
divided into three parts :^ 

(1) Junior college courses, academic and vocational 

(2) Provincial technical institute courses 

(3) Part-time day and evening courses 

Curricula for the stage of fiu"ther education must ofFer a variety of oppor- 
tuiiities to prepare for entrance to university or for employment. Conse- 
quently, courses of study should be constructed by the central authority, in 
co-operation with universities, on the one hand, and with local education 
authorities, business, industry, agriculture, and labour, on the other. The 
curricula should, in our opinion, be formulated in accordance with the 
following general patterns. 

( 1 ) Junior College Courses 

49. Junior colleges should provide co-ordinated, yet diversified, pro- 
grammes of academic and vocational education. Evidence which we have 
received indicates that the departmentahzation of secondary education into 
academic and vocational education has led to invidious comparisons; in 
some cases a stigma has been attached to pupils attending particular types 
of schools. This must be rectified. The existence of a distinct division, even 
marked in larger centres by separated buildings, has made the transfer of 
pupils from one course to another diflRcult if not impossible. Many of the 

'In view of the recommendation that apprenticeship training be arranged in co- 
oi^eration with the Department of Labour, indvistry, and organized labour, we have not 
attempted to outline programmes for this t>pe of education. 


present vocational schools, however, through the introduction of the general 
(matriculation) or academic course, have tended to become multi-lateral 
schools oJEering programmes in practically all fields. Similarly, in other 
secondary schools where all the optional subjects are offered, courses are 
suflBciently diversified to permit the arrangement of individual programmes 
varying from the relatively practical to the strictly academic. But there is 
some evidence of duplication of facilities and confusion of purposes as be- 
tween academic and vocational schools. The best remedy for this seems 
to be the establishment of multi-lateral schools offering many programmes 
in academic and vocational education, so that transfer of students may be 
readily accomplished. This holds for both rural and urban areas. In very 
large urban centres, distinct schools offering only a specialized academic or 
vocational programme may develop; but we do not believe that this is 
necessary, although we appreciate that the conditions in large centres of 
population present unique problems for which exceptional provisions may 
be required. With these possible exceptions, the general needs of academic 
and vocational education can best be met by the establishment of multi- 
lateral junior colleges. These will be central schools. In rural areas trans- 
portation of pupils will be necessary or possibly the provision of residential 
facilities or financial aid for students. 

50. A core of general education will be continued in all specialized pro- 
grammes, through the obligatory subjects of English, social studies, and 
physical and health education, together with cadet training for boys and its 
equivalent for girls. Although the content of the core subjects may be 
adapted to meet the needs of special groups, standards of achievement should 
be maintained. Elective subjects will be selected by a student according to 
the preparation required for the occupation or the advanced course in edu- 
cation which he expects to enter. A student will be required to select each 
year three optional subjects in his specialized field. The principal of the 
school may permit an able student to choose a fourth optional subject. To 
enrich his programme, such a student should be encouraged to select an 
optional subject not directly related to those of his specialized group of sub- 
jects. He should choose an optional subject with a view to developing a 
worthy activity for leisure time, a useful personal skill, or an additional field 
of information. This option might be selected from such subjects as music, 
art, dramatics, science, shop work, home economics, a language, or one of 
the commercial subjects. 

51. Following admission to junior college, a student will enter upon a 
programme in one of two main divisions: university-preparatory or vo- 
cational. The university-preparatory courses will extend over three years,^ 
the final year being the equivalent of the present first year of university 
work for those who hold the required upper school standing. Thus, a high 

*As explained earlier, where suitable facilities cannot be provided, these will be two- 
year courses leading to entrance to the first year of university. 


level of education will be available locally to young persons capable of 
profiting from it: the university-preparatory programme of the third year of 
junior college will actuallv be two years beyond that of the former middle 
school, or of junior matriculation. It will also permit students to test further 
their aptitude and desire for advanced studies before entering a university, 
therebv serving to eliminate much of the present decrement in university 
enrolment from year to year— with a consequent saving to the public in the 
cost of operating these institutions. Provision will be made for specialized 
academic courses, for example in languages, in science, or in mathematics. 
Our purpose is to ensure that the graduates of the university-preparatory 
courses in junior colleges will have a sound general education and adequate 
specialized preparation in their elected fields. 

52. In organizing the university-preparatory programmes of the junior 
college, attention has been given to the necessity of attaining an equitable 
distribution of the prescribed work over the three years. That a redistribu- 
tion of work is necessarv is evident from representations made to us to the 
effect that the work of the present grade XIII course is unduly heavy in 
comparison with that of the grades immediately preceding. We have also 
borne in mind that the third year course in junior college will be alternative 
to a first year honours course in university and should, therefore, approx- 
imate it in standards and content. For these reasons, we recommend pro- 
grammes requiring study of not more than five subjects,^ upon which 
candidates for entrance to university will be examined after completing a 
three-year programme. 

53. Other programmes, including industrial and technical, commercial, 
agricultural, and home economics, will permit specialization in the major 
vocational fields. The vocational courses will extend over two years, and 
the aim wiU be to develop advanced technological skills leading to employ- 
ment on the semi-professional level. They will not be purely technical and 
will not give complete training in a skilled trade; in all cases, however, the 
essentials of a general education will be included. Junior colleges will not 
be associated with a particular industry but will meet the general need for 
vocational education. They will not duplicate the work of the technical 
institutes which, as will be made evident later, will provide specialized train- 
ing in a particular industry or industrial field for graduates of the junior 
colleges and others who have had equivalent training. 

54. In the section on the secondary school, we discussed in some detail 
the provision of optional courses and whether or not a local education 
authority should be required to provide all those which were listed. The 
considerations discussed there apply with equal force to the junior college 
programme. Specialization in any one of many fields, which is the major 
aim of this programme, cannot be attained unless at least a majority of the 

'Students will not be required to write an external school examination on physical and 
health education. 


courses are provided by the local education authority. As our recom- 
mendations in regard to junior colleges require the provision of a new type 
of educational institution in this province, it seems obvious that, at least for 
the transitional period, the central authority must exercise fairly close con- 
trol over the programmes. However, when experience has been gained and 
a tradition established, the control should be left almost entirely to tlie 
local education authority. In the meantime, the central authority must 
specify the obligatory subjects as well as the minimum number of optional 
subjects to be provided bv each local education authority'. Provision of 
additional optional subjects may be left to the discretion of the local edu- 
cation authorit)', subject to the approval of the Minister of Education. We 
are aware that a local education authority' may wish to provide options 
directed toward a local industry or industries. This development should be 
encouraged, on condition that the local education authority makes provision 
for other optional subjects so as to enable students to enter occupations not 
available locally. 

55. We recommend^ 

that, for the curricula in junior colleges, 

(i) tJie following subjects he obligatory in each of the three years: 
English; social studies; physical and health education, including 
cadet training for boys and its equivalent for girh; religiotis edu- 
cation or ethics (for the first two years only); 
(ii) for the first and second year, the required three optional subjects 
be selected from the following: mathematics (one or two); science 
(one or two); French or special courses in French; Latin; German; 
Spanish; Greek; Italian; shop work; typetvriting arul office prac- 
tice; bookkeeping; shorthand; accountancy; agriadture; nutrition 
and cookery; textile arts; homcmaking; music; art; dramatics; 
(iii) for the third year of the university-preparatory programme, the 
required three optio7ial subjects be selected from the following: 
mathematics (one or two); science (one or two); French or special 
courses in French; Latin; German; Spanish; Greek; Italian; music 
or art. 

56. The following sample programmes illustrate how, in addition to the 
obligatory subjects, a student may select courses leading to specialization 
in the options indicated: 

University-preparatory Programmes (Optional Subjects) 

(a) Mathematics Option— two mathematics, one science or one language 

(b) Science Option— two sciences, one mathematics or one language 

(c) Language Option— Latin, two other languages 

(d) General Option— anv three optional subjects 

'With reference to subjects cliosen in the third >('ar vvliero required for uni\ersity 
entrance purposes, we propose that candidates he required to write two papers in Eng- 
hsh, not more than two papers in mathematics where this subject is chosen, and one 
paper only in the case of each of the other subjects selected. 


Vocational Programmes (Optiomil Subjects) 

(a) Industrial and Technical Option— specialized and related shop 
work, mathematics, science 

(b) Commercial Option— typewriting and office practice, bookkeeping, 
shorthand or accountancy 

(c) Agricultural Option— agriculture and related shop work, mathe- 
matics, science 

(d) Home Economics Option— textile arts or nutrition and cookery, 
homemaking, science or art 

(2) Promncial Technical Institute Courses 

57. The courses in technical institutes will be of two main types. The 
first may be classified under the general heading "Trade Courses". These 
should be designed to provide students from the apprenticeship level of em- 
ployment and above with training in skills related to a specific occupation, 
such as bricklaying, plumbing, or barbering. Classes should be conducted 
in specially equipped schools, preferably in polytechnical institutes, in order 
to ensure economy in accommodation and equipment. The programme of 
training for the skilled trades will be limited in content, the aim being inten- 
sive preparation to assure immediate competency in a specific occupation. 
The students will enter the institute directly from a trade, from secondary 
school, or from junior college. Some will attend night school only, while 
others will enrol in full-time classes for a period of weeks or months. Some 
training will be co-ordinated with the apprenticeship system; in this event, 
students should be granted credit for their work in the institute toward their 
period of apprenticeship training. For some trades, training in the technical 
or polytechnical institute wall suffice, without further experience through 

58. The other type of course may be classffied as the "Industrial Course". 
Technical institutes, similar to the mining, textile, and forestr}^ institutes 
now operating, should be established for a number of industries. Through 
industrial courses, students will be prepared for technical and administra- 
tive posts auxiliary to professional engineering. They will be admitted fol- 
lowing successful completion of two years at a junior college or, where 
they have equivalent academic and vocational qualffications, from employ- 
ment in industry. Industrial courses should include : ( 1 ) day courses, two 
or three years in length, leading to a diploma; (2) part-time day or evening 
courses for which partial credit might be given on the diploma course; and 

(3) advanced courses or short special courses, day or evening, for workers 
from industry. Since the curriculum provided for each institute will be 
highly specialized to meet the needs of a related industry, it is impossible 
to state any general governing principle other than that general education 
should be combined with specialized technical training through the inclu- 
sion in each curriculum of: (1) technical subjects; (2) related mathematics 


and science; (3) English; and (4) social studies, or economics, or history 
and geography. 

(3) Part-time Day and Evening Courses 

59. In our discussion of part-time education,^ we indicated the types 
of courses which we believe should be offered for part-time students. In most 
cases, these courses will be given in secondarv schools and junior colleges 
under the jurisdiction of a local education authoritv. But some will be 
provided in provincial technical institutes. 

60. In the part-time day and evening classes, the regular courses of 
secondary schools and junior colleges should be offered. In addition, 
courses should be provided which are directly related to an avocation. 
Thus, they will vary from purely academic and cultural to vocational, and 
will include mathematics, history, science, languages, and practical courses 
such as home economics, shop work, sewing, woodworking, typing, busi- 
ness machine operation, and bookkeeping. 

Constructing Curricula and Courses of Study 

61. It will be evident that our recommendations and suggestions will 
necessitate a comprehensive revision of the present curricula and courses 
of study. It is imperative, for example, that the length of time required 
to complete the equivalent of the present programme of elementary and 
secondary education be reduced from 13 to 12 years. The revision will 
require not only a reduction in content through elimination of duplications 
and obsolete material, together with a redistribution of content, but also 
the drafting of new courses for the third year of junior college. In the 
general revision it will not suffice to prepare curricula and courses for iso- 
lated units or stages; in order to secure a unified and coherent programme 
it will be essential, in view of the scope of the proposed revision and 
reorganization, to consider the educational system at* a whole. So great and 
so important is the task, that it can be successfully discharged onlv through 
a whole-hearted co-operative effort by the representatives of all the groups 
who are actively and directly concerned with the formal education of our 

62. Accordingly we recommend 

(a) that an ad hoc committee he appointed by the Minister of Educa- 
tion to prepare, in co-operation with local curriculum committees, 
curricula for the proposed three stages of the educational, s'/stem; 

(h) that, later, ad hoc committees be appointed bij the Minister of Edu- 
cation to draft new courses of study to implement any report of the 
said committee on curricula; 

( c ) that the new programmes be introduced, if necessary on a tentative 
and experimental hams, as expeditioush/ as possible. 

'See Chapter III. 



Religious Education 

Public Elementary Schools^ 

1. Since the inception of a public system of education in Upper Can- 
ada, it has been an accepted principle that "religion and morality, though 
not sectarianism, must have a central place in any system of education."^ 
This principle was embodied in the general regulations based on the Con- 
solidated Common School Act for Upper Canada, 1859. Its observance was 
made effective by the issue, in 1861, of a school manual which gave com- 
prehensive instructions for the conduct of schools. 

2. During the past century relatively little change has taken place in 
this province in the statutes or regulations relating to religious instruction 
in schools. The Act still provides that "Subject to the regulations, pupils 
shall be allowed to receive such religious instruction as their parents or 
guardians desire."^ Religious freedom of the individual is ensured by the 
provision that "No pupil in a public school shall be required to read or 
study in or from any religious book, or to join in any exercise of devotion 
or religion, objected to by his parent or guardian."'* The present Public 
Schools Act also states in Section 8 that "every clergyman shall be a school 
visitor in the municipality where he has pastoral charge . . . may attend 
any school exercises, and at the time of any visit may examine the pro- 
gress of the pupils and the state and management of the schools, and give 
such advice to the teachers and pupils, and any others present as . . . [he] 
may deem expedient." Under "Duties of Teachers" in Section 103(a) of 
the same Act, it is provided that teachers "inculcate by precept and example 
respect for religion and the principles of Christian morality and the high- 
est regard for truth, justice, loyalty, love of country, humanity, benevo- 

'For a discussion of religious education in Roman Catholic separate schools, see 
Chapter XIX. 

^C. B. Sissons, Egerton Rijerson, His Life and Letters, Vol. II, Toronto: Clarke, 
Irwin, 1947, p. 95. 

'The Public Schools Act, Sec. 7(2). 

*Ihid., Sec. 7(1). 



lence, sobriety, industry, frugality, purity, temperance and all other virtues." 
And candidates for admission to normal school continue to be required to 
submit a certificate of good moral character. 

3. In the Programme of Studies for Grades I to VI of the Public and 
Separate Schools, 1941, occur the statements: "The schools of Ontario 
exist for the purpose of preparing children to live in a democratic society 
which bases its way of life upon the Christian ideal," and "The school must 
seek to lead the child to choose and accept as his own those ideals of con- 
duct and endeavour wliich a Christian and democratic society approves." 
Similarly, the Programme of Studies for Grades VII and VIII of the Public 
and Separate Schools, 1942, contains the view that the social purposes of 
the school "imply the existence of standards of behaviour, generally agreed 
upon and accepted by all, to which the conduct of the individual may be 
referred. Such standards do in fact exist; and, in our society, they derive 
from the ethics of the Christian religion and the principles of democratic 

4. It is evident that the spirit of the original statutes still pervades 
the Acts and regulations regarding religious instruction in our schools. In 
September, 1944, revised regulations^ made pro\ision for religious educa- 
tion as a subject of instruction in public elementary schools, and the fol- 
lowing excerpts from these indicate the policy of the Department of Edu- 
cation. They ensure: 

(1) That the programme of studies in religious education for pubhc ele- 
mentary schools will be non-sectarian and undenominational: 

Instruction in Religious Education shall be given by the teacher in accordance 
with the course of study authorized for that purpose by the Department, and 
issues of a controversial or sectarian nature shall be avoided. 

(2) That religious freedom of the individual will be guaranteed: 

No pupil shall be required to take part in any religious exercises or be subject to 
any instruction in Rehgious Education to which objection is raised by his parent 
or guardian. 

A teacher claiming exemption from the teaching of Religious Education as pre- 
scribed by the regulations, shall notify the Board to that effect in writing; and it 
shall then be the duty of the Board to make such other provision as may be neces- 
sary to implement the regulation with respect to the teaching of the subject. 
The Minister may grant to a Board exemption from the teaching of Rehgious Edu- 
cation in any classroom or school provided the Board shall request in WTiting such 
exemption and shall submit reasons therefor. 

5. The considerations behind the decision of 1944 to include religious 
education as a subject of instruction in public elementary schools appear 
to have been as follows: 

( 1 ) Many children were receiving no religious instruction in Sunday 
School and probably none in their homes.- In the brief (64) sub- 

'O. Reg. 30/44. 

^rief 44, Teaching of Religioius Edttcation in the Puhhc Schools of Ontario, sub- 
mitted by the Department of Education. 


mitted by the Board of Christian Education, United Church of Can- 
ada, the number was estimated at "50% of our children and youth. . ." . 

(2) After the outbreak of war in 1939, there was a rapid increase in the 
number of clerg)'men who availed themselves of the opportunity to 
give religious instruction in school before and after school hours. 
Nevertheless, tlie Ontario Educational Association and other interested 
groups urged that more adequate provision for religious instruction 
be made. It was impossible, it was claimed, for clergymen to meet 
all the school needs under the existing regulations. 

(3) The conviction that education can never be complete without religion 
was expressed in briefs submitted by the following: the Board of 
Christian Education (Brief 64); the Inter-Church Committee on Re- 
hgious Education (Brief 28); The Church of England (Brief 77); 
Judge G. W. Moriey (Briefs 104 and 118); the Cathohc Bishops of 
Ontario (Brief 196); and the Canadian Jewish Congress (Brief 46). 
In the last-named brief, the importance of religious education was 
emphasized, although the policy of the Department of Education 
with regard to it was opposed. 

6. For the purpose of assisting teachers, a series of guide books, suc- 
cessfully used in England, and known as the Surrey Guides, was revised 
for use in Ontario in grades I to VI. The series was recommended to the 
Department bv The Inter-Church Committee on Weekdav Religious Edu- 
cation and, before publication, the revised guides were submitted to this 
committee and to representatives of other reUgious bodies. 

7. The regulations of 1944 respecting religious education provided 
fewer departures from established practice than is commonly supposed. 
The major changes were brought about by the provisions for specific instruc- 
tion in religious education during school hours and for affording the 
clergy an opportunity to give instruction in reHgious education at such 
time. The relevant clauses of the regulations are as follows: 

2. (a) Subject to the regulations, two periods per week of one-half hour each, 
in addition to the time assigned to religious exercises at the opening of 
school, shall be devoted to ReHgious Education. 

(b) Religious Education shall be given immediately after the opening of 
school or immediately before the closing of school in either the morning 
or the afternoon session. 

(d) By resolution of the School Board, a clergv'man or clergvmen of anv 
denomination, or a lay person or lay persons selected by the clergyman 
or clergymen, shall have the right, subject to the regulations, to give Re- 
ligious Instruction, in lieu of a teacher or teachers.^ 

8. The prescribed course of study for religious education has met with 
general acceptance, although strong objections were raised by certain 

'O. Reg. 30/44. 


Presbyterian ministers/ certain Baptist ministers,^ and some members of 
the Jewish faith.^ The objections, in the main, centred around the pos- 
sibility of interference by the state in matters of conscience. 

9. The Bible is the only textbook for the subject of religious education. 
There are strong reasons for valuing the authorized version, based on 
tradition and literary appreciation, but it is written in sixteenth-centur)- 
English and the language is a serious obstacle to understanding on the 
part of pupils in the elementary school.'* 

10. The course in religious education is designed to ensure that aU 
children will have an opportunity to receive religious instruction and be- 
come more famihar with the Scriptures. But pupils may be exempted from 
such instruction if objections are raised by a parent or guardian, or by 
the board of trustees as representatives of the community. Relatively few 
boards of trustees have applied for exemption. In the school year 1944-45, 
with 5,403 public school boards of trustees operating in the province, only 
63 requested exemption from the teaching of religious education in classes 
or schools under their jurisdiction. The figures for the three following years 
were as follows: 1945-46, 37; 1946-47, 35; 1947-48, 46. Of the 46 boards of 
trustees which asked for exemption in 1947-48, 7 were urban with juris- 
diction over 143 classes and 4,094 pupils, and 39 were rural with jurisdiction 
over 199 public school classes and 5,273 pupils.^ The schools concerned 
were widely distributed over the province. In 40 of the 46 cases the 
request originated in centres having several religious denominations, in- 
cludino^ Roman Catholic. In one case, reference was made to a "large 
number of Jewish children". In 21 of the 46 cases exemption had been 
claimed in the preceding school year. 

11. Evidence submitted to us has demonstrated that, if our aims in 
education are to be achieved, religious education should be included as a 
subject of study in the curriculum of the proposed public elementar)' 
schools. The present regulations relating to religious education in public 
schools seem to be eminently satisfactory. Accordingly we recommend 

(c) that religious exercises continue to be conducted and religious edu- 
cation continue to he a subject of instruction in public elementary 

(b) that the present regulations relating to religious exercises and re- 
ligious education in public schools be continued; 

^The Christian Faith and Rehgion in Ontario Schooh, a pamphlet, by seven clergy- 
men, six Presbyterian and one United Chm-ch, presented to the Royal Commission on 
Education with Brief 45. 

-The Gospel Witness, March, 1945. 

"Brief 46, Religious Education in Public Schools, submitted by the Canadian Jewish 

*Cf. Scottish Education Department, Secondary Education, A Report of the Advisor>- 
Council on Education in Scotland, Edinburgh: His Majesty's Stationery OflBce, 1947, 
pp. 101-103. 

^Letter from the Deputy Minister of Education, dated Jamiary 13, 1949. 



(c) that in any revision of the guide books in religious education care- 
ful consideration be given to specific items raised by the Canadian 
Jewish Congress in Brief 46, Appendix I; 

{d) that consideration be given to the advisability of granting approval 
for the use of children's Bible stories containing such parts of the 
Scriptures as may be especially suitable for elementary school 

{e) that the Department of Education seek the co-operation of The 
Inter-Church Committee on Weekday Religious Education in the 
preparation of a list of daily Scripture readings, based directly on 
the course of study for religious education, for use in the senior 
division of the elementary school; 

(/) that provision be made in the programmes of junior colleges of 
education and in the elementary school option of the Ontario Col- 
lege of Education for instruction in methods of conducting religious 
exercises and of teaching religious education in public elementary 

Secondary Schools and Junior Colleges 

12. No provision is made in the present regulations for religious edu- 
cation in secondary schools as a subject of study within school hours. By 
resolution of a board of trustees, clergymen or their representatives may 
give religious instruction to pupils of their own denomination at least once 
a week after school hours. Such instruction must be given in the school, 
and no religious emblem of a denominational nature may be exhibited in 
the school during school hours. Religious exercises, however, subject to 
the usual exemptions, form a part of the regular programme. 

13. In our opinion, it is necessary to make more adequate provisions 
for the teaching of religious education in the proposed secondary schools 
and junior colleges. The inclusion of instruction in religious education in 
the present secondary school curriculum was advocated in several briefs 
submitted to us, notably in that of The Inter-Church Committee on Week- 
day Religious Education (Brief 28), and in that of the Rev. Howard G. 
Sal ton (Brief 159). In our opinion, it is essential that students in the new 
secondary schools and in the first two years of junior college receive either 
instruction in religious education given by clergymen or instruction in 
ethics from members of the regular staff of the school. 

14. We therefore recommend 

(a) that religious exercises be conducted in the new secondary schools 
and junior colleges; 

(b) that religious education and ethics be subjects of study in each 
year of the secondary school programme and in each of the first 
two years of the junior college programme; 

( c ) that, with reference to the subjects of religious education and ethics. 


(i) each student be required to enrol each year in one of these 

two subjects; 
(ii) instruction be given within school hours; 
(iii) that the wishes of the parents, if expressed, be observed in 

determining in which of these two subjects his child is to be 


(d) (i) that instruction in religious education be given by a clergyman 

to pupils of his own denomination; or, alternatively, that clergy- 
men of a number of denominations select a clergyman to give 
instruction in religious education to the pupils of those de- 
(ii) that a clergyman be authorized to designate a person, other 
than a teacher in a publicly supported school, to conduct his 
course or courses in religious education; 

(e) that the courses in ethics be taught by members of the teaching 
staff of the school; 

(/) that the time to be devoted to instruction in each of religious edu- 
cation and ethics be two half-hour periods a week; 

( g ) that instruction in religious education be given in designated rooms 
in the school or elsewhere and at such times within school hours 
as may be determined by the principal and approved by the local 
education authority; 

(h) that regulations be drafted permitting clergymen, or persons desig- 
nated by them, to enter a school and give instruction in the subject 
of religious education in the rooms and at the times specified, or 
to receive charge of students and give such instruction elesewhere 
at the time specified; 

(i) that the clergyman be responsible for the content and organization 
of the course in religious education given by him or his represen- 

(/■) that the Department of Education prepare suitable courses of study 
in ethics, approve textbooks, and prepare regulations relating to 
instruction in such courses; 

(k) that provision be made in the programme of the Ontario College 
of Education for instruction in methods of conducting religious ex- 
ercises and of teaching ethics in secondary schools and junior 

Religious Emblems 

15. Section 24 of the Regulations for High Schools and Collegiate Insti- 
tutes reads as follows: "No religious emblem of a denominational nature 
shall be exhibited in a high school during school hours."^ Similar regula- 
tions are in effect for other secondary schools, and, up to 1944, were 

'O. Reg. 252/48. 


effective for public schools. In our opinion, some regulation of this kind 
is essential in all publicly supported schools. We therefore recommend 
that regulations be drafted to ensure 

(i) that religious emblems of a denominational nature be not exhibited 
in any public elementary school, secondary school, junior college, 
or provincial educational institution during school hours, except in 
a room used for religious instrtiction by a clergyjnan, or a repre- 
sentative designated by him, to adherents of his own denomination, 
and then onh/ during the periods allotted to such instructions; 
(ii) that a religious habit be not permitted to be worn by a teacher em- 
ployed in any public elementary school, secondary school, junior 
college, or provincial educational institution while discharging his 
official duties, except by a teacher in training while engaged in his 
programme of training. 

Health Education and Services 

16. For countless generations mens sana in corpore sano has been an 
aim of education. In ancient Greece training in physical exercises occupied 
an important place in the all-round development of the citizen. The pur- 
pose was not to produce the professional athlete, but to develop rhythm 
and ensure moderation in all things and, at the same time, to overcome 
incipient indecision and weakness of character. With the triumph of the 
ascetic outlook in the Middle Ages, this aim of education was over- 
shadowed, but it triumphed again with the rise of nationalism and human- 
ism at the beginning of the Modem Age. Still later, the purpose of education 
came to be regarded as the complete development of the individual, and 
health and physical education came to occup\' an important place in the 
school programme. 

17. The provision of conditions conducive to healthful school living, 
a part of the larger problem of public health and in itself a complex prob- 
lem, cannot be achieved bv anv single design or measure. As a minimum, 
the total school environment should contribute to natural, happv, and 
healthful living; an adequate programme of health and physical education 
should be followed; and there should be co-operation between provincial 
and local school and health authorities in the provision of an adequate pro- 
gramme of health services. In modem schools, emphasis is placed on the 
practical application of knowledge in the development of proper health 
habits, behaviour routines, and desirable attitudes toward personal and 
public health. In a real sense, health is now part of the entire curriculum of 
the school. 

18. We recommend 

that in all publicly supported schools instruction in health be correlated 
with health services. 


19. It is generally accepted that school health services should make 
provision for the following: complete physical examination of each indi- 
vidual at stated inter\als; special physical examinations to meet specific 
needs; routine examinations at frequent intervals; dental inspection and 
treatment; tests for tuberculosis; first-aid treatment; supervision of special 
health provisions for atypical children; the keeping of individual health 
records; and the inculcation of proper mental attitudes toward matters per- 
taining to public and personal health. 

20. We recommend 

(a) that, failing the production of a certificate of good health from a 
qualified physician, physical examinations of children in schools 
under the jurisdiction of the Department of Education be con- 
ducted, subject to tlie consent of the parents, by the public health 
authority, as follows: 

(i) physical examinations of all children at the following stages: 
(1) preschool or upon entrance to elementary scfwols; (2) 
the final year of elementary school; (3) the final year of 
secondary school; 

(ii) special examinations of children, upon request of the health 

(b) that the physical examinations specified under (a) (i) include 
tests for tuberculosis; 

(c) that participation bij a student in strenuous competitive sports in 
any school year be permitted only after submission of a written 
statement from a physician that his physical condition is satisfactory; 

(d) that dental inspection be provided annually; 

(e) that the parent or guardian be immediately advised of the findings 
of any physical examination or dental inspection; 

(/) that medical or dental treatment, where provided, be undertaken 
only with the prior written consent of the parent or guardian; 

(g) that routine examinations of all children— with reference to specific 
factors such as height, weight, vision (both near and far), hearing, 
etc.— be undertaken annually by the nurse assigned to the school; 

(h) that continuous health records be maintained on a confidential basis. 

21. A mental hygiene programme in education, as described by the 
National Committee for Mental Hvgiene (Canada),^ is directed toward 
the solution of three problems: 

( 1 ) The provision of an adequate program in schools which will ensure the 
development of positive mental health for all boys and girls. 

(2) The provision of a preventive program in schools which will head ofiF mental 
ill-health in the form of mental disorders, delinquency, family diflBculties, 
behaviour problems, imhappiness and general maladjustments. 

(3) The provision of an adequate remedial program for the rehabilitation of the 
maladjusted, the delinquent and the behaviour problem. 

'Brief 24, Mental Hygiene. 


By 1948 six mental health clinics had been estabhshed by the Mental Hy- 
giene Branch of the Ontario Department of Health. Any person may re- 
ceive assistance from a clinic/ and it has been reported to us that approxi- 
mately 50 per cent of the persons receiving assistance are children. In 
one of the centres a School Guidance Clinic is conducted each week during 
the school year. In 1947 "The group classified as being of school age,^ (6-13 
years ) contributed 27.0 per cent of the total cases."- During the same period, 
26.2 per cent of all cases were referred to the chnics by the Children's Aid 
Society, 4.9 per cent by the School Medical Services, and 4.2 per cent h\ 
educational agencies.'^ 

22. In April, 1948, a research project was instituted by the National 
Committee for Mental Hygiene (Canada) in collaboration with the Uni- 
versity of Toronto and the Board of Education, Forest Hill Village. In this 
project, not only was a mental health clinic established at the school, but 
courses in "human relations" were taught at stated grade levels ( in 1948-49, 
in grades VI, IX, and XI). Those who are conducting the project antici- 
pate that both members of staff of these schools and parents will gain a 
greater appreciation of the mental health problems of children and ado- 
lescents, that a number of persons will be trained for mental health work 
in schools, and that benefit will accrue to pupils generally as well as to 
those who receive special treatment. 

23. In September, 1948, a school guidance clinic was established by 
the Toronto Board of Education in co-operation witli the Toronto Board of 
Health. Children may be referred to the clinic by teachers, attendance 
oflBcers, visiting attendance teachers, and others, through the school prin- 
cipal and a central co-ordinating officer; and the psychiatrist, psycholo- 
gist, and others assess the problem and determine remedial measures. Treat- 
ment is confined to educational and social therapy. . 

24. We recommend 

that local education authorities be encouraged to co-operate with local 
hoards of health in matters relating to the mental health of school 
children and, where necessary, to secure assistance from the mental 
health clinics of the Ontario Department of Health. 

25. Adequate nutrition is essential to the development and well-being 
of the individual. At the beginning of the century, malnutrition was thought 
to result from a deficiency of food, and was' generally understood to be an 
indication of poverty or lack of proper care in the home. It is now known 
that malnutrition is caused as frequently by improper diet as by insufficient 
food, and that it can, and does, occur in children in wealthy homes. Since 
the vast majority of children attend publicly supported schools, it is some- 

'See "Part 9, Mental Health Clinics", The Mental Hospitals Act, Sections 93-102. 
■"Mental Health Chnics" in the 80th Annual Report of Mental Hospitals Division, 
Department of Health, Ontario, 1948, p. 113. 
'Ibid., Table 2, p. 115. 


times contended that schools should provide nutritious meals for pupils. 
A two-year experiment was conducted in Toronto by the Red Cross Society 
to determine the effect of the provision of a nutritious noon-day meal on 
the health and school achievement of pupils. The findings, announced in 
1950, were inconclusive, indicating diat the beneficial results generally 
expected had not been realized. 

26. In many schools in Ontario today, milk is regularly supplied to 
pupils. The practice of providing a hot dish to supplement pupils' lunches 
is increasing, particularly in rural elementary schools. In some cases a com- 
plete lunch is prepared in the school. In most large secondary schools 
conditions of attendance are such that a cafeteria or similar service must be 
supplied. Under the present regulations of the Department of Education, 
however, there is no statutory provision for a school board to provide free 
milk or meals for pupils. 

27. Without attempting to minimize the complexity of the problem, 
it is apparent to us that the nutrition of the school child has two major 
aspects: the actual provision of meals or other supplementary feeding in 
schools; and an increased study and understanding of the importance of 
proper diet. It is our opinion that tlie school is directly concerned with the 
second aspect; but with regard to the first, in view of the cost and the in- 
conclusive nature of the evidence as to the efiFect on either health or school 
achievement, we feel that education authorities should not be charged 
with responsibility for the provision of meals or for the supplementary 
feeding of pupils. Where the need for such is evidenced, responsibility 
should be assumed by welfare, health, or other agencies. 

28. We recommend 

(a) that in our schools greater emphasis be placed on the study of 

(b) that expenditures by local education authorities for expendable 
supplies for meals or supplementary feeding in schools he not recog- 
nized as part of approved cost of operating for legislative grant 

(a) that, where it is necessary for lunches to be eaten in school, school 
authorities provide adequate accommodation, facilities, and super- 

(d) that any provisions made by a local education authority for meals 
or supplementary feeding be, wherever feasible, under the direct 
supervision of a qualified nutritionist. 

Temperance Education 

29. In accordance v/ith our general philosophy of education, we hold 
that indulgence to excess is not consistent with the character of the wise 
man. Thus, the development of temperance in living becomes a major aim 


of education. Man's greater control over nature has increased the dangers 
of intemperance. When increased control over natural forces is not matched 
by a corresponding self-control on the part of the individual, it becomes 
dangerous. Growth in man's power over the physical world puts an ever 
increasing responsibility on education to prepare man to control the forces 
which science and mass production have placed in his hands. In imparting 
skills and knowledge, modem schools are at tfieir best; but in matters 
respecting the application and use of such skills and knowledge, they are 
much less successful. It is here that education finds its greatest challenge. 

30. Self-control requires knowledge, proper attitudes, and practice. 
Knowledge is necessary because, in order to exercise self-control, intelli- 
gent decisions must be made, based upon information as to alternatives and 
possible outcomes. Self-control requires proper attitudes toward justice, 
fair play, and respect for the rights of others. Knowledge, unless guided by 
sociallv desirable attitudes, may result in behavioiu" that is selfish and 
socially destructive. In our opinion, temperate living is a cumulative pro- 
duct of the entire school programme. It cannot be achieved solely through 
classroom instruction in a subject labelled "Temperance Education". 

31. An aspect of the general problem of education for temperate living 
to which much attention has been directed relates to the use of alcohol and 
tobacco. As part of his general education a student should be prepared 
to make adequate decisions on matters such as this. The relevant facts 
should be taught in the same manner as any others. If the method followed 
in teaching the effects of alcohol and tobacco differs from that used in 
teaching other subject matter, onlv confusion and vitiation of the instruc- 
tion can result. Specific instruction on such topics can be most naturally 
and effectively included in the courses in social studies, science, and health 
and physical education, as is done at present in elementary and secondary 
schools. We support the continuance of this instruction and suggest that 
in the reorganized educational system it be given in the third and fourth 
years of the secondarv school programme. The established facts regarding 
the effects of alcohol and tobacco upon human health and behaviour 
should be presented; unscientific and sensational statements should be 
avoided, since over-emphasis will tend to defeat the pm^pose of the 

32. We recommend 

(a) that temperance in living he an aim perm-eating the school pro- 
gramme at all stages of the educational system; 

(h) that in the third and fourth years of the new secondary schools 
specific instruction on the effects of the use of alcohol and tobacco 
be given; 

(c) that information on the effects of alcohol and tobacco be presented 
objectively and in keeping with the latest available scientific find- 


Sex Education 

33. The need for providing sex education, in our schools was stated in 
many briefs submitted to us. Recommendations on the subject were made, 
for example, in Brief 32 on Rural Education, presented by the Federated 
Women's Institutes of Ontario; in Brief 170, on Physical and Health Edu- 
cation, presented by the Men's Physical Education Section of the Ontario 
Educational Association; in Brief 193, on A Course on Marriage and Family 
Life to be Incorporated in the Secondary Schools of the Province of Ontario, 
submitted by the Council for Social Service of the Diocese of Toronto, 
Church of England in Canada; and in Memorandum 27, on Sex Education 
in the Schools, submitted by the Health League of Canada. There is a lack 
of agreement in these briefs and in other literature on the subject as to the 
extent to which sex education should be given. For example, some propose 
a definite and comprehensive course on family life and human relations; 
others propose instruction on sex education as only part of courses, such as 
science and biology, in the existing curriculum, and suggest special lectures 
on sex hygiene and venereal diseases only. 

34. Similarly, there is apparently little agreement as to who is to be 
charged with responsibility for instruction in sex education. Some would 
assign the responsibility to the church; some to parents; some to the school. 
Others would assign it jointly to the church, the home, and the school. Those 
who maintain that instruction in sex education should be given in school 
suggest that instructors include the teacher, the minister, the doctor, the 
psychologist, and the family counsellor. There is a further lack of agree- 
ment as to the stage or stages of the educational system in which instruction 
should be given. 

35. In our opinion, the school cannot be asked to accept full responsi- 
bilit)' for sex education. Its task must be to supplement the efforts of home 
and church, particularly through the teaching of ph) siology and through 
the development of wholesome attitudes and ideals. Sex education has two 
aspects: enlightenment and knowledge; and the development of the ap- 
propriate social attitudes and ideals of human relationships and family life. 
To achieve the first object, the school can provide facts and information; 
the second can be pursued as an integral part of the general social and 
spiritual development of the child. 

36. Sex education should be organized to meet the needs of pupils in 
each of three stages of their development. The first occurs before the 
attainment of pubert)', when questions will be asked arising from the 
natural curiosity of children and their desire to learn. In the normal course 
of events these questions will be answered by the parents. Where they 
arise in school, however, they should be answered bv the teacher as fully 
and naturally as possible or, where it is deemed advisable, should be referred 
to the parents. For the most part, during this stage there will be need in 
school for incidental instruction only. 


37. The majority of pupils will attain puberty sometime during their 
first three years in secondary school. Sex instruction for such pupils should 
be of two t^'pes: instruction in the physiologv of the human body; and 
individual counsel. The former should be included as part of the courses 
in science and health; the latter will generally be given by parents but, 
where necessar)', should be given by the health counsellor to individual 
pupils where the consent of the parents has been obtained. Parents would 
be gready assisted in instructing their children in this subject if parent 
education, perhaps thi-ough home and school associations, included specific 
guidance for imparting information on sex education. 

38. During the third and fourth vears of secondary school there should 
be continuing and increasing emphasis upon the development of whole- 
some attitudes and ideals in relation to family life. This development may 
be promoted through the study of many subjects, particularly social studies, 
physical and health education, religious education, and ethics. It is a part 
of the social, moral, and spiritual growth of the child. 

39. If children do not receive proper sex education in home or school. 
they will almost inevitably leani about sex in undesirable ways and gain 
a partial and dangerous kind of knowledge. Accordingly, although we are 
not prepared to offer detailed recommendations concerning the content of 
a course of study, we do suggest that instruction in sex be given in the new 
secondary schools. A studv of the physiological facts of sex and the inculca- 
tion of related spiritual and moral values should develop in )Outh a whole- 
some understanding of, and a proper perspective regarding, the place of 
sex in the life of the individual. We believe that such instruction is necessarv 
to assist the individual both to become well adjusted and to understand 
and appreciate the moral and spiritual concepts which underlie our societv' 
and the conventions vv'hich thev sustain. 

Education for Homemaking 

40. Education for homemaking and family living has long been included 
in the curricula of our schools. In the ofiicial programme for public schools 
issued in 1871, for example, "Needlework" and "Domestic Economy" were 
listed as courses for girls, the latter "in place of Euclid". Home economics 
was first introduced in the elementary school programme; not until the 
beginning of the present century did it become a subject of study in a few- 
high schools. Its inclusion in the secondary school programme evoked some 
criticism, as indicated in Brief 60, submitted bv Miss Anne W. Cameron. 
Inspector of Home Economics, Department of Education of Ontario: 

The elevation of this generally regarded elementary subject to the secondary level 
was criticized by those interested in secondary school pupils, because the tech- 
niques of acquiring cooking and sewing skills were not esteemed sufficiently intel- 
lectual for a high school subject. Science helped in answering both criticisms. In 
the courses of study the scientific aspect of homemaking was emphasized in the 
selection of content. The methods of science were adopted in teaching methods b\- 


the stressing of theory, the carrying out of experiments and the provision of 
laboratory lay-outs patterned after science laboratories. 

41. That the purpose of the courses in home economics has broadened 
over the years is evident from the following statement of the significance 
of education in this subject today: 

Cooking and sewing are terms commonly conceived as Home Economics activities 
in the classroom by those unfamiliar with the modern programme. Home Eco- 
nomics is interested in the preparation of food and the construction of clothing; 
but the problems of home economics, as they concern the individual, have much 
broader implications. Home Economics grew out of an interest in family life and 
this interest has controlled its development at every stage. Feeding a family satis- 
factorily demands a wide learning; meals must be planned, food purchased, pre- 
pared, served and stored. The wise planning of meals involves a knowledge of 
nutrition, food purchasing, markets, price variations, economies in buying, grades 
of goods, distribution, storage, etc. The problems of the selection, purchase and 
care of clothing, and the problems of housing, caring for children, protecting 
health, caring for the sick, using family resources and developing and maintaining 
wholesome human relationships, can be as broad as the teacher in her interpre- 
tation of the curriculum is able to see them.^ 

42. Courses in home economics are included in the present programmes 
of study for grades VII and VIII of the elementary school and in the first 
four years of secondary school but, owing to administrative and financial 
difficulties, they are available to only a small proportion of the children of 
the province. The subject is listed as an option and provision for it is, there- 
fore, at the discretion of the local board of trustees. In secondary schools 
the tendency is to offer it only in grades IX and X. Only in the larger urban 
centres are there adequate facilities in either elementary or secondar\' 
schools to present the courses satisfactorily. 

43. The vast majority of girls will make homemaking a career, although 
they may for a limited period engage in some other occupation. Although 
boys should also receive a practical training in many of the homemaking 
skills, as far as this can be arranged, and must achieve an adequate under- 
standing and appreciation of the problems of home life and family relation- 
ships, it is pertinent to note that the future welfare of the home and famih 
will depend in large measure on the training received by girls in the home 
and in the school. 

44. We are here primarily concerned with the needs of those girls who 
will end their formal education upon completion of the secondary school 
programme or during the junior college stage. It is particularly important 
that members of this group should receive practical training in the science 
and art of homemaking and family life before they leave school. 

45. Under the proposed reorganization of the educational system, courses 
in home economics, including homemaking, will be given in secondar\ 
schools and junior colleges. Such courses in secondary schools will require 

'Brief fiO, Hnmc Economics Education, submitted by Miss Anne W. Cameron. 


a complete transformation of the present programme into a four-year unit 
offered in all schools. In the first two vears of the secondary school, courses 
in home economics will be compulsory, and, in the third and fourth years, 
optional. In junior colleges, home economics will also be provided as an 
optional course. Thus, there will be opportunities for both practical instruc- 
tion and specialized training in home economics, in conformit)' with the 
general purpose of junior college education. 

46. We wish to emphasize the need for, and importance of, practical 
courses in homemaking, particularU' in secondary schools. At present there 
is a definite tendency to make courses in home economics too scientific and 
academic; the result is a failure to deal with the problems that a young wife 
and mother will meet in her everyday life in the home. We support a return 
to instruction in practical and everyday problems and to adequate practice 
in the common and useful skills in an environment approximating that of 
the average home. 

47. Courses of a similar but more advanced nature will be oflFered, as 
one of the two-year vocational options, in junior colleges. While the training 
will still be practical, an increasing emphasis should be placed on the 
scientific aspects of the programme. 

48. Specialized training in certain branches of home economics will be 
offered in poh'technical institutes. This, however, should be supplemented 
by part-time courses in day and night classes. Of particular importance will 
be the opportimity to provide part-time courses in homemaking during 
winter months at agricultural institutes. 

49. We recommend 

(a) that courses in home economics be organized into two units: 

(i) a foiir-ijcar unit for the new secondary schools; 
(ii) a two-year unit for the vocational option in the new junior 

(b) that local education authorities be required to provide courses in 
home economics in secondary schools and junior colleges; 

(c) that part-time courses in homemaking he provided 

(i) by local education authorities in secondary schools and junior 

(ii) in provincial technical and polytechnical institutes. 

Agricultural Education 

50. The growing complexity of agricultural practices demands a high 
degree of technical knowledge and the mastery of many specialized skills. 
Indeed, if the majority of farmers permit their practices to lag behind the 
technical knowledge available, our national economy will be gravely af- 
fected. Agricultural education and practice are of fundamental importance. 

51. In planning the general educational programme, we have included 
agriculture as a major subject. Through courses in agriculture, students in 


secondary schools will have an opportunity for exploration and practical 
work. In junior colleges specialized courses in agriculture will be available 
for vocational as well as for university-preparatory pui-poses. Those who 
desire training at the university level in agricultural and allied sciences may 
pursue intensive specialization along scientific lines at the Ontario Agri- 
cultural College. 

52. However, these provisions will not alone meet fully the need for 
practical training in specialized branches, arising from the specialization and 
mechanization of modern agriculture.^ In addition to training provided in 
the schools of the general educational system, practical training will be 
required in specialized branches of agriculture, similar to that envisaged 
in our recommendations concerning provincial technical institutes and ap- 
prenticeship training. To this training, our general recommendations relating 
to practical training for other fields of industry will also apply. Eventually, 
a number of agricultural institutes should be established to provide short, 
intensive courses and, in a broader field, longer specialized programmes. 
In addition, agricultural courses will be provided as part of the programme 
of part-time education in day and night classes. There is good reason to 
believe that a form of apprenticeship training in agriculture may in time 
be necessary. 

53. Responsibility for the organization and financing of agricultural insti- 
tutes and of apprenticeship training in agriculture will probably lie with 
the Department of Education or with the Department of Agriculture. The 
Department of Education should have major responsibility for the establish- 
ment and operation of institutes and for the provision of facilities for part- 
time education; for any system of apprenticeship training in agriculture, 
the Department of Agriculture should assume the same responsibilit)' that 
the Department of Labour does in other industrial fields. There should be 
co-operation and co-ordination of effort between the Departments of Edu- 
cation and Agriculture. 

54. In addition to the provision made for courses in agriculture in 
secondary schools and junior colleges, we recommend 

(fl) that, where the need is demonstrated, part-time courses of instruc- 
tion in agriculture he provided by local education authorities 
responsible for post-elementary education, as part of their general 
programme of part-time education; 

(b) that the Department of Education establish and operate provincial 
agricultural institutes under provisions similar to those hereinbefore 
specified for other provincial technical institutes; 

(c) that consideration be given to the advisability of establishing a 
system of apprenticeship training in agriculture; 

(d) that co-operation between county agricultural representatives and 
teachers of agriculture be continued and encouraged. 

^See Brief L Rural Education, submitted li>- the Agricultural Commission of Inquiry. 


Education in Rural Areas 

55. One hundred years ago Ontario was predominantly rural, and the 
people lived mosth' in scattered clearings hewn from the forest. As we 
indicated in Chapter I, the t^pical school was a primitively furnished 
structure built of logs, in which the rudiments of education were imparted. 
But conditions ha\'e changed. Todav the population of Ontario is predomi- 
nantly urban and our wealth is derived in large measure from industries 
other than agriculture. The educational scene has undergone a corresponding 
change; today more than two-thirds of the children enrolled in elementary 
schools live in urban centres. Nevertheless, 166,000 children are in attend- 
ance at niral schools under the jurisdiction of approximately 4,000 boards 
of school trustees; and education in rural areas has retained many of its 
distinctive problems, although changing economic and social conditions are 
rapidly making it possible to effect satisfactory solutions. 

56. Educational facilities in rural areas have improved almost beyond 
measure: great progress has been made in improving buildings, accommo- 
dation, equipment, school programmes, and qualifications of teachers. 
Nevertheless, there are many who maintain that the improvements have 
failed to keep pace with those in urban areas. This is evident in the follow- 
ing critical quotations selected from briefs relating to education in rural 
areas : 

Rural children do not now have educational opportunities which are equivalent 
to those enjoyed by urban children. 

Teachers in rural schools are frequently inexperienced and inadequately 

The more successful teachers often transfer to urban schools in a short time 
and thus create a lack of continuity of good teaching in the rural areas. 

School accommodations and equipment are frequently inadequate in rural 

The secondary school education of the majority of ntral pupils is dependent 
on the ability of their parents to finance their transportation or their living-away- 
from-home. . . : 

The School Attendance Act needs to be more effective in some rural sections 
of the province. 

57. From personal observation and study and from evidence submitted 
to us, we are convinced that educational conditions in many rural areas are 
not satisfactory. In our opinion, they are a direct result of the system of 
administration and finance of education which prevails in rural areas and 
of the attempt to provide an educational programme for an excessive number 
of grades (in some cases ten). We feel that deficiencies will be overcome 
through the implementation of our proposals— reorganizing the stages of 
education, establishing larger units of administration, and adopting a new 
method of financing. Given adequately trained and interested teachers, 
suitable buildings and equipment, appropriate curricula and courses of 
study, freedom to adapt the courses of study to meet local conditions, and 


special educational services, any school, no matter where located, can pro- 
vide for the complete development of its pupils. In the new elementary 
schools the basic programme will be the same for rural and urban areas. 
This will be true also of the new secondary schools, but the latter will 
provide an opportimity, through optional subjects, for a bias in the direction 
of industry, commerce, or agriculture. There need, therefore, be no disparity 
between rural and urban education. Under the arrangements we suggest, 
education authorities in rural areas will be able to provide adequate edu- 
cational facilities and to adapt programmes to meet their own specific local 

58. When considering rural education, however, we are particularly 
conscious of the needs of many isolated sections of our province. We are 
concerned over the plight of boys and girls in some sparsely settled areas 
and are convinced that special provisions will be required for their edu- 
cation. The effectiveness of the educational facilities available has been 
seriously undermined in some rural sections because the statutes and 
regulations relating to compulsory school attendance have not been strictly 
enforced. This should not be tolerated, and elsewhere we suggest provisions 
for their enforcement. 

59. The contention that our schools "educate" children away from the 
farm has been made on numerous occasions, but we doubt that its general 
truth has been substantiated. We incline to the view that the factors which 
"took children away from the farm" in the past were fimdnmentally economic 
and social rather than educational. We do not believe that certain things 
should be taught to rural children merelv because they live in the country, 
or tliat all rural children, or only rural children, should become workers on 
the land when they leave school. But we do subscribe whole-heartedly to 
the view that children attending rural schools are entitled to the best possible 
educational opportunity. This is not to say that rural schools should be 
facsimiles of urban schools; on the contrary, we have stressed that the needs 
peculiar to specific areas can be best met through local adaptations of the 

60. Fortunately, economic and social conditions in rural areas have 
changed almost beyond belief in the present century. No longer does life 
on the farm necessarily mean unremitting toil and deadening manual labour 
for incredibly long hours and under primitive living conditions; the gasoline 
engine, electricity, radio, and changes in farm machinery and farm practices 
have transformed rural life. The physical comforts of the urban dwelling 
are now generally available, as well as the arts and other means of culture; 
farm homes are no longer isolated, even in winter; and life in clean and 
healthful surroundings in the country is the envy of many of those who live 
in crowded cities. Under these conditions, an education such as we have 
planned will not, in our opinion, lead "away from the farm" those who have 
the requisite interest and ability. The provisions we have outlined for agri- 


cultural and homemaking education should assist greatly in the develop- 
ment of stable and prosperous agricultural communities. 


61. In the programme of the modern school, extra-curricular activities 
occupy an important place. Some of the most commonly found are team 
sports, literar)- and debating societies, choirs, orchestras, glee clubs, dramatic 
societies, hobby crafts, nature clubs, and camera clubs. In our opinion, 
activities of this t\pe assist in the development of the individual; they are 
within the responsibilit\- of the school; and they should be considered 
complementar)^ to the prescribed curriculum. They should not be regarded 
as "fads and frills", dissipating the school's energies, but as worthy enter- 
prises contributing to student growth. Convinced of their value, we suggest 
that such activities be termed "co-curricular" to indicate that they form an 
integral part of the school programme. 

62. Participation in co-curricular activities provides opportunities for a 
student to leam and practise the responsibilities of group living and to 
evaluate his own abilities and achievements. It promotes the development 
of avocational interests which are worthy and socially acceptable. We 
suggest that in each school there be provided a varied programme of pur- 
poseful co-curricular activities in accordance with the needs, interests, and 
abilities of the students. In larger schools it would be advisable to have 
some member of the staff act, under the supervision of the principal, as 
director of the programme. He would have a number of responsibilities: to 
encourage worthy activities; to supervise those activities largely under 
student control; to assist each student to participate in some activity; to 
ensure that no student engages in so many activities that his progress in the 
other activities of the school programme is jeopardized; to equalize the 
load of co-curricular supervision among the members of the staff; and to 
arrange the co-curricular programme so that its operation extends over the 
full school year. 

63. We recommend 

(a) that the term "co-curricular" he applied to those activities of the 
school programme which are ancillary to the prescribed provincial 
curriculum, and which heretofore have heen termed extra- 

(b) that in the interests of the all-round development of students, local 
education authorities be encouraged to provide adequate pro- 
grammes of co-curricular activities and supervision of such pro- 
grammes btj members of their teaching staffs. 

Audio- Visual Aids in Education 

64. Audio-visual aids are devices by which a teacher, through an appeal 
to more than one of the senses, endeavours to clarify, establish, and cor- 


relate accurate concepts, interpretations, and appreciations. They are of a 
wide variety in type and include the blackboard, bulletin board, charts, 
dramatics, flat pictures, graphs, maps, models, objects and specimens, motion 
pictures, phonographs, posters, cartoons and clippings, radio, stereoscopes, 
projected pictures, tours and visits. 

65. Audio-visual instruction is not a new development. Some of the 
forms of visual aids used today originated centuries ago; sand, boards, and 
slate were the predecessors of the modern blackboard; and objects and 
specimens have always been used in schools. Excursions were a common 
practice in ancient Greek education; and since the invention of printing, 
pictures and illustrations in books have been constantly used. The value 
and usefulness of audio-visual aids were demonstrated centuries ago. The 
problems today are to select those aids most suitable for the purpose in 
hand; to develop the most effective methods of using them; and to provide 
that their use be always ancillary to, and not a substitution for, the skill 
and ability of the teacher. 

66. In recent years, the Ontario Department of Education has promoted 
the use of films and radio broadcasts in schools. The Visual Education 
Branch began operation in 1936, using the lantern slides of the Province of 
Ontario Motion Picture Bureau. Teaching notes were forwarded with the 
slides. Later, silent and sound films were added to the library. The increasing 
interest of teachers in their use may be illustrated by the following figures. 
Durin^ the vear 1943, there were 6,932 showino;s of films to a total school 
audience of 676,184 pupils. In 1947, films were screened on 42,767 occasions, 
with a total attendance of 4,471,307 students. More than 1,200 schools are 
now registered with the Audio-Visual Education Branch for film and slide 
service. This expansion occurred in spite of a scarcity of equipment during 
and immediately following the Second World War. 

67. The film librar)' of the Audio- Visual Education Branch contains a 
large number of films on social studies, natural science, vocational guidance, 
health and safety, music, physical education, art and crafts, English, home 
economics, teacher training, and vocational and technical topics. Silent 
films are also distributed to schools and standard slides are in fairly constant 
circulation. No charge is made b)' the Department of Education for the 
use of films or slides; requests for them are made on a standard requisition 
form, signed by the principal of the school. A catalogue containing regu- 
lations, directions for ordering films, suggestions for effective use, and a 
description of films is forwarded to each school making application for film 
service. E\'erv^ effort is made to select for the library of the Branch films 
which are directly related to topics in the programmes of studies. Depart- 
mental oflBcials, school administrators, and teachers meet to evaluate new 
material. Films for use in elementary' school grades are carefully correlated 
with the programme of studies. The use of film strips as a teaching aid has 
also been encouraged. In order to have them available for immediate use. 


and in view of their lower cost as compared with sound fihns, the Depart- 
ment is encouraging the purchase by individual schools of film strips ap- 
pro\ed and recommended bv the Branch. Teachers enrolled in the audio- 
visual education summer courses are co-operating in the annual revision of 
the approved list of film strips for use in specified subjects and at specified 
grade levels. 

6S. In order to take ad\ antage of the film service provided by the Audio- 
\'isual Education Branch, it is necessary for local education authorities to 
purchase projectors and screens. The cost of such equipment is included 
as part of approved cost for general legislative grant purposes. Local home 
and school associations and other organizations have made an important 
contribution toward audio-visual education through assistance in the 
purchase of necessary equipment. Thirty projectionists, employed by the 
National Film Board to work on rural area circuits, provide film programmes 
for many rural schools. Films for use in these schools are provided by the 
Audio- Visual Education Branch on an extended-loan basis. 

69. The use of such teaching aids must be evaluated in relation to 
effectiveness and cost, and under no circumstances should the regular school 
programme be jeopardized through their indiscriminate use. Teachers need 
to know the correct function, proper use, and limitations of each t)'pe of 
audio-visual aid and should be trained in its use. The training should be 
basic, and not designed to develop a high technical skill. For this purpose, 
the present summer courses in audio-visual education methods should be 
continued, including the use of films and film strips, evaluation, radio and 
recordings, non-projected visual aids, and projector operation. 

70. In 1943, the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, in collaboration 
with the nine provincial Departments of Education, presented the first 
series of National School Broadcasts heard on a coast-to-coast network, with 
the purpose of strengthening the sense of Canadian citizenship. Bv agree- 
ment between the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation and the Canadian 
Education Association, the National Advisory Council on School Broad- 
casting was set up, with representatives of the Departments of Education, 
the National Conference of Canadian Universities, the Canadian Teachers' 
Federation, the Canadian Trustees' Association, and the Canadian Federa- 
tion of Home and School. Parallel with this development in the national 
field was a rapid growth in provincial school broadcasting. In 1944, the 
Ontario Department of Education produced an experimental series of edu- 
cational broadcasts in music, social studies, English, and guidance. 

71. Broadcasts for elementarv^ and secondary schools are now presented 
each year, from October to April, by the Department of Education. They 
are intended to provide supplementary material acceptable to schools as 
an enlargement of the daily programme, and care is taken that each broad- 
cast bears a definite relationship to some topic in the courses of study. A 
pamphlet outlining the complete programme of school broadcasts is pre- 


pared and distributed to teachers in September by the Audio- Visual Edu- 
cation Branch. 

72. Professional script writers are employed through the services of the 
Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, but each script is approved by the 
official of the Department of Education in charge of the series. The Canadian 
Broadcasting Corporation is responsible for engaging the actors or musicians 
required and for putting the programme on the air. Costs of script writing 
and production are borne by the Audio-Visual Education Branch of the 
Department of Education, while the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation 
co-operates by supplying time on the air, free of charge, with "wire-line" 
service and studio and production facilities. In order to ensure coverage, the 
programme of school broadcasts is offered to local private stations, whose 
response has generally been enthusiastic and generous. 

73. In addition to provincial and national school broadcasts originating 
in Canada, certain programmes selected from the Columbia Broadcasting 
Svstem "American School of the Air" are made available, on Mondays and 
Thursdays, to Ontario schools. The "March of Science" and "Tales of Ad- 
venture" series are representative of these programmes. Surveys of the use 
of school broadcasts are conducted annually bv the Department. In 1946, 
for example, it was revealed that slightly over 40 per cent of all secondarv 
schools were using broadcasts, and reports from elementary school in- 
spectors indicate a fairly wide use in elementary schools. It is apparent that 
school broadcasting is assuming considerable proportions and that it pro- 
vides enrichment material to stimulate student imagination and broaden 
intellectual horizons. 

74. We therefore recommend 

(a) that the programme for the professional preparation of teachers 
include instruction in the selection, use, and evaluation of audio- 
visual aids; 

(b) that provision he made, through summer courses and otherwise, 
for the instruction of teachers in service in the effective use of 
audio-visual aids; 

(c) that consideration he giveyi to decentralization of the audio-visual 
programme of the Department of Education through the establish- 
ment of local libraries of approved films and other aids; 

(d) that the Atulio-Visual Education Branch continue to be responsible 
for the supervision, direction, and co-ordination of the provincial 
programme of audio-visual education; 

(e) that developments in frequency modulation broadcasting and tele- 
vision, and other technical advancements receive careful study by 
the Department of Education in respect to their value and possible 
use in school broadcasts; 

(f) that approved expenditures on equipment and supplies for audio- 
visual education he included as part of approved cost of operating 
for general legislative grant purposes. 


Textbooks and Classroom Supplies 

75. Under the Common Schools Act of 1816/ the estabHshment, support, 
and control of schools, the choice of textbooks and courses, and the appoint- 
ment of teachers were left largely to local trustees. That there was some 
fear of foreign influence is shown b)' two restrictions imposed by the Act; 
teachers had to be British subjects, and trustees had to report every three 
months, for the approval of the district board of education, the titles of 
books in use in their school. Each district board was authorized to spend 
up to £100 of its share of the legislative grant for books to be distributed 
to schools. 

76. Under the Act of 1824,- a General Board of Education for the 
province was given power to prescribe textbooks and courses of study for 
common and grammar schools. This movement toward centralization was 
rexersed by the Act of 1843 which restored to local trustees the choice of 
textbooks and courses. 

77. The report of Dr. Egerton Ryerson on the school system inspired 
the School Act of 1846^ which returned to the central authority responsibility 
for the selection of textbooks and courses. The introduction by Ryerson, in 
1846, of the Irish National Readers was the first step in a movement toward 
uniformit)'. The principle, then established, of selecting and listing books 
for each grade and subject, to be used in all schools of the province, has not 
been appreciably altered since. Ryerson at first selected books for listing 
from the open market. Later, as necessit)^ arose, books were prepared 
specifically for use in Ontario, sometimes at the direction of the central 
authority. It is interesting to note that the first school book prepared 
especially for use in Upper Canada was an arithmetic written by the Rev. 
John Strachan and published in Montreal in 1809. Gradually, the Depart- 
ment of Education assumed general responsibility for the preparation of 
textbooks. They were usually purchased under long-term contracts at a 
price fixed by tender. When the last general revision of the curriculum was 
made in 1936, however, the practice of selecting books from the open 
market was re-introduced. At the present time, with the exception of two 
or three survivals from the list of departmentally prepared books, all 
authorized texts are publishers' books. 

78. School textbooks are given official listing by the Department of 
Education in a variety of ways; they may be authorized, or prescribed, or 
approved, or recommended. Each classification has its own special signifi- 

79. A book is authorized when a contract for its publication is drawn 
up between the Minister of Education and the publisher and ratified by 
Order-in-Council. This procedure enables the Department to control the 
quality and supply of books, and, since the publisher has an assured sale 

'56 Geo. Ill, Ch. 36, S.U.C. 
"4 Geo. IV, Ch. 8, S.U.C. 
'9 Vict., Ch. 20, S.P.C. 


for a period of years, a favourable price is usually secured. The authoriza- 
tion of a book is made effective by provisions in several school Acts^ forbid- 
ding pupils to use unauthorized books. A list of authorized textbooks is 
published in an annual circular. In a recent circular, 72 authorized books 
are listed, 26 in the elementary section, and 48 in the secondary, with the 
titles of two books occurring in both lists. Many of the authorized books 
have been revised from time to time, but the replacement of many of them 
is overdue. 

80. The former practice of having books prepared under departmental 
direction was virtually abandoned with the revision of the curriculum in 
1936. Since that time the selection of books for authorization has been made 
by committees appointed for the purpose. These committees have, in many 
cases, recommended and supervised alterations or revisions so as to adapt 
chosen books to the requirements of the courses of study, or to make them 
more suitable for use in the schools. In a few cases the list of authorized 
texts has been expanded to provide multiple authorizations— that is, instead 
of listing only one authorized book for a subject or grade, two or three have 
been listed. Under this arrangement teachers are free to choose the book 
or the series of books which they prefer, subject to the approval of their 
board of trustees. 

81. The prices of authorized texts and the discount to be allowed by 
the publishers are fixed in the original contract. They have long borne 
favourable comparison with those prevailing elsewhere. Some prices have 
been abnormally low because of subventions paid by the Department. In 
1943, rising costs of production led publishers to request a general subsidy 
of 10 per cent on the retail prices of all authorized books. In spite of this 
subsidy, which was allowed, it became necessary to grant increases in retail 

82. For the departmental grade XIII examinations it is necessary to 
prescribe literary works for study in English and the foreign languages. 
The selections are made by joint committees representing the Department, 
the universities, and teachers. Since the list of books is revised or reprinted 
annually, it is not a list of authorized books, and departmental responsibility 
extends only to ensuring adequate supply. Unless copyright or a particular 
abridgment is involved, any publisher may oflFer an edition, and prices then 
become competitive. 

83. Books listed as approved and recommended fall into several cate- 
gories. In general, there is more freedom in their use than in the case of 
authorized books. 

( 1 ) A set of eight readers has been approved, at the request of separate 
school authorities, for use in Roman Catholic separate schools as 

'The Public Schools Act, Sees. 103 (d), 105, 120, 133; The High Schools Act, Sec. 
60, siibseetion 1, and Sec. 66; The Separate Schools Act, Sees. 49 and 94; The Depart- 
ment of Education Act and regulations thereunder, O. Reg. 95/47, Sec. 28 and Schedule 1. 


alternatives to the authorized readers; these are neither subsidized nor 
controlled as to price by the Department. 

(2) Books used in vocational schools, apart from those used in courses 
covered by the secondary school authorized list, are described in a 
departmental circular as approved and recommended by authority of 
The Vocational Schools Act. Generally speaking, there is a choice of 
books for each subject and grade, and the prices, being competitive, 
are kept at a reasonable level. 

(3) It has never been customary to authorize books for grade XIII courses. 
Originallv the numbers involved were too small to justify authorization, 
and it has been felt that freedom of choice was desirable for senior 
classes. Teachers have been free to select books outside the recom- 
mended lists. The only restriction has been a requirement that books 
selected for use should be approved by formal resolution of the local 

(4) In the case of subjects like Italian and Spanish, where the number of 
pupils is small and authorization is impracticable, textbooks are recom- 
mended. In all the modern languages, reading of several books is re- 
quired, and the choice of these is left to the teacher. Lists of recom- 
mended books are provided in the course of study, but teachers are 
free to use books not on these lists. 

(5) Freedom of choice is also permitted in the case of books in English 
hterature in secondary schools, where several types of books, such as 
fiction, biography, and modern plays, are to be used in each grade. 
Teachers are free to make their own selection from the suggested lists 
or outside them. There is no dearth of available material, and the 
teachers generally welcome freedom of choice. 

84. Pupils may be asked to provide all these books, in exactly the same 
way as they may be required to buv authorized texts. There are, however, 
classes of recommended or approved books which the board is expected to 
provide. Books required for supplementary reading or for reference in 
English, history, geography, science, and foreign languages, and books 
required for reference in art, health, agriculture, horticulture, shopwork, and 
home economics are to be provided by the board on the recommendation 
of the principal. This applies both to single copies of reference books and 
to class sets which are valuable in teaching reading, geography, history, 
and science. 

85. Textbooks play an indispensable part in anv system of group teach- 
ing. They economize eflFort for pupil and teacher. For the teacher the 
textbook serves as a guide to both the content and the organization of the 
course. In the pupil's hands it may be used to prepare for, or to supplement, 
classroom instruction. 

86. The importance of having the best possible textbooks is obvious. 
The textbook strongly influences the pupil's attitude toward a subject of 


study and contributes to success or failure in his work. However, a single 
textbook, even a good one, combined with a fixed course of study, has a 
limiting effect. If a topic is not in the textbook or is not mentioned in the 
course of study, the student may dismiss it as unimportant. A choice of 
subject matter and emphasis, which should depend to some extent on local 
interests, cannot be readily achieved with a single authorized text. Changing 
interests and conditions, fresh knowledge, new developments in methods 
or in the interrelations of courses demand freedom to make necessar\- 
adjustments. This is not possible where one textbook is authorized for a long 
term of years. 

87. All these considerations point to the value of having several books 
for each subject or grade. The system of authorizing a single book for a 
subject or grade has the advantage of ensuring economy, but it has ver\ 
definite limitations. Experience with multiple authorization has shown that 
freedom of choice is most desirable and that the extent to which any one 
of the alternative books is chosen is a fair measure of its relative merits. 
Furthermore, a form of departmental listing for vocational schools has been 
tried and found satisfactory over a period of years. It consists of approving 
whole lists of books, and it is adequate proof that a list of alternative books 
can be freely increased or reduced while maintaining prices at a reasonable 
level. The existing system of authorizing books for some specific subjects 
or grades to the exclusion of all other books should be replaced by a less 
rigid system in which a number of suitable books are approved for each 
course or grade. Under such a system schools will be better able to adjust 
courses to meet local needs. 

88. It might be argued that if freedom in the choice of books is to be 
accorded it ought to be complete and left entirely to the local authority, 
as it is in England and in some parts of the United States. We believe, 
however, that until larger units of administration under boards responsible 
for the supervision of instruction are common throughout the province the 
selection of books and their official listing should be a function of the 
Department of Education. 

89. Experience seems to indicate that if suitable books are not immedi- 
ately available they are quickly prepared by publishers to meet any need, 
and that only in exceptional cases should it be necessary for the Department 
of Education to undertake the preparation of a textbook. The possibility 
that a book could be added at any time to an approved list would be an 
incentive to publishers to bring out new and better books. This incentive 
has been lacking under the static svstem of authorization in effect until 
recently. In a memorandum on curriculum revision, of December 10, 1949, 
the Minister of Education announced certain changes in established policies 
relating to textbooks. Authorization of the readers in use for grades I to 
VI was discontinued. Permissive use of basic reading series from an ap- 
proved list was made possible, and it was intended that other series might 


be added to the list trom time to time. Boards of trustees were to provide 
sufBcient readers for the use of pupils, and expenditures for the purchase 
were to be eligible for purposes of general legislative grants, without regard 
to "ceiling". Since we had made a similar decision prior to this announce- 
ment by the Minister of Education, we agree with these changes in depart- 
mental policy and urge their extension to other types of textbooks, particu- 
larly with reference to local freedom of choice. 

90. In most of the provinces of Canada some free classroom supplies 
as well as textbooks are provided. Under the present system of grants the 
elementary schools of Ontario are moving rapidly toward providing pupils 
with free books and materials. Present legislation makes such provision per- 
missive; but, since the expenditures are to be approved for purposes of 
general legislative grants, it seems likely that the practice will become 
general. It would be logical, therefore, to require boards to supply all 
textbooks and supplies free of charge, at least in the new elementary and 
secondarv' schools. The cost to the Department would be no greater than 
that to which it is at present committed. 

91. Accordincrlv we recommend 

(a) that the present system of textbook authorization, requiring the 
use of onhj one specified textbook in certain subjects or grades, be 

(b) that the present system, whereby the Department of Education 
subsidizes the cost of production of authorized textbooks, be dis- 

(c) that a system of multiple authorizations, whereby each board of 
trustees will be free to choose a textbook, or textbooks, for any 
subject or grade from a list of approved titles prepared by the 
Department of Education, be instituted; 

(d) that school boards continue to be authorized to provide, free of 
charge, textbooks and other approved classroom supplies to pupils 
in attendance in elementary and secondary schools and in special 
education classes during the period of compulsory school atten- 
dance; and that expenditures incurred for the purchase of text- 
books selected from an approved list issued by the Department, 
and for other approved classroom supplies, be included as a cost 
of operating for general legislative grant purposes. 

Libraries in Ontario 

92. It is not too much to say that the invention of printing has made us, 
intellectually, what we are. Nor is it too much to say that once formal 
education has ended and the personal contribution of the teacher has 
ceased books remain the most significant of all education media. It follows 
that, since in no system does education end with the school life of the child, 
we have to plan for the voluntary continuance throughout life of education 


through books. Books for most people mean borrowed books; and, for most 
people again, borrowed books mean public library books. Public libraries, 
therefore, should be treated as an integral part of tlie educational system. 

93. The subject will be considered under the following headings: 
(1) Classroom Libraries, (2) School Libraries, (3) Public Libraries, and 
(4) Provincial Library. 

( 1 ) Classroom Libraries 

94. The Public Schools Act, Section 89 (f), includes among the duties 
of boards that of establishing and maintaining school libraries. Section 
54 ( 1 ) ( f ) of the same Act permits the issuing of debentures for a number 
of purposes, including that of providing a school library. 

95. The Public Libraries Branch of the Department of Education pro- 
vides a valuable service by sending collections of books— travelling libraries 
—to schools without libraries or to small schools whose libraries need to be 
supplemented. This is shown by the following record of the number of 
books sent to elementary and secondary schools: 1937—8,000; 1942—16,000; 
1947-53,000; 1948-55,000. Books sent to elementary schools constitute 80 
per cent; of the remaining 20 per cent, two-thirds are sent to adults, one- 
third to secondary schools. 

96. In the Programme of Studies for Grades VII and VIII, page 43, ap- 
pears this statement: 

The Classroom Library 

To cultivate properly die love of reading and to form the habit of finding in 
books information and enjoyment, students must have ready access to reading 
material. Every classroom, then, should have a small, well-chosen, attractive 
library . . . Boys and girls should also be encouraged to make use of the facilities 
ofi^ered by community libraries. Teachers in rural areas without library service 
may apply to the Travelling Libraries Branch, Department of Education, Parlia- 
ment Buildings, Toronto, for the loan of a box of books for a limited period to 
supplement the classroom library. 

There is a similar statement in the Programme of Studies for Grades I to VI, 
page 35. 

97. It will be noticed that the above quotation suggests a classroom 
library. Few elementary schools, other than those in urban municipalities, 
have accommodation to provide a separate room for a school libraiy. A 
classroom library, however, is possible in every elementary school in the 
province, and in nearly every case some attempt is made to provide one 
equipped with reference material and supplementary reading material. The 
extent and effective use of the library must in every case depend on the 
interest and ability of the teacher. The basic purpose of classroom libraries 
is auxiliary to formal classroom instruction, and for the most part the books 
are directly related to the studies of the pupil. 


(2) School Libraries 

9S. A secondary school is required by law to have a library, but, since 
there is no specification of standards, the quality of library service varies 
with the interest of die principal or board and with the degree of support 
these receive. There are many good libraries; but the general level of library 
service in all but the larger schools is far from satisfactory. In the secondaiy^ 
school the basic purpose of the library is the same as that of the classroom 
library in the elementary school. Pupils are taught to use books collaterally 
with tlieir classroom instruction. The only difference is that owing to the 
organization of classes it is advantageous in the secondary school to have 
the library centralized. In both instances books are tools in education, and 
under the present school programmes their importance has been greatly 

99. Books, however, may also be used for their own sake: not as direct 
educational tools, but as a means of creating and fostering that love of books 
and reading which assists the continued development of the individual in 
post-school life. A recent report on a nation-wide survey of British public 
libraries^ makes the following statement: 

Children need those books which will make them aware of the extent of life's 
activities and interests, and which will stimulate curiosity and the desire for 
knowledge, and foster the imaginative faculties, encouraging the development of 
individuality and that intimate personal resourcefulness which alone is the founda- 
tion of happiness. 

It has been argued that this should be the prime aim of our educational 
system and not a mere contingent by-product which materializes only in a 
minority of cases. Indeed, it has been suggested that, with outstanding ex- 
ceptions, the present system of supplementary reading detracts from, and 
possibly destroys, the love of reading which it is its main purpose to create. 
There is much to be gained by a continuing study of the situation by teach- 
ers and librarians who are willing to explore the whole problem anew. 

100. The majority of pupils go directly, and perhaps not unwillingly, 
from school to a work-a-day world in which the)' have to earn their living. 
Unless they have already acquired the habit of reading for reading's sake, 
they enter on a period of "educational forgetting". Those who gladly leave 
school behind tend to discard everything associated with their school work; 
and if books are unknown to them except as educational tools, then books 
also are likely to be discarded. This is a profligate waste of much of the cost 
of school education. The only antidote is an application of the technique 
which has been developed in working with boys and girls in progressive 
public libraries where it has been proved beyond doubt that with skilled 

'Lionel R. McColvin, F.L.A., Public Library Stjsfem of Great Britain. London: The 
Library Assn., 1942, p. 2. 


and unobtrusive guidance children can readily acquire a lasting love of 

101. School libraries, as distinct from classroom libraries, should employ 
this technique. Undoubtedly the work is done more successfully in the boys' 
and girls' departments of public libraries. But where, through distance or 
traffic hazards, children do not have reasonable access to a public library, 
a school library administered on the same lines is the best substitute. Ex- 
perience has shown that school libraries of this type are best operated as 
a part of the local public library system. This is effected through co-opera- 
tion between the local board of school trustees and the public library' board. 
It cannot be expected tliat a teacher should know the content of say two 
thousand hand-picked books which form the constantly changing book 
stock of a boys' and girls' library. Nor has the teacher time or opportimit)' 
to evaluate the flood of books published each year. This is a librarian's job, 
for which he has been specially trained in the universit)' library-training 
schools at Toronto or McGill. The book knowledge of librarians is no less 
important than the books in the library. 

102. Some secondary school libraries endeavour to foster a love of books 
and reading in addition to making the library a school workshop, but man\- 
people doubt whether the two functions can be successfully combined and 
whether the workshop aspect does not inevitably submerge the other. In- 
deed, public libraries are largely used as workshops by secondary school 
students, although secondary school libraries exist. It would therefore appear 
that secondary school libraries do not adequatelv fulfil their function even 
as workshops. If this is so, it is probable that there would be a substantial 
gain if secondary school libraries concentrated on the workshop function 
and if the other aspect of young people's reading were recognized as a func- 
tion of the public library. 

(3) Public Libraries 

103. With one or two notable exceptions only the larger public libraries 
are equipped to undertake these tasks satisfactorily, and even the largest 
and best public libraries are inadequately financed in view of their oppor- 
timities. Many of the smaller public libraries are povert)'-stricken institu- 
tions. If the public library is recognized as a main channel for adult 
education, and if its work with boys and girls of elementary school age and 
with young people of post-elementarv school age is recognized as the best 
preparation for voluntarily continued education, the following figures are 
disturbing. They show a paucity, both of local expenditures on libraries and 
of legislative grant. It should be remembered that the elementary and 
secondary education costs which are referred to are for school pupils only; 
the cost of the public library is for school pupils plus all adults. 



From Local 
Taxes, etc. 





Cost of Elementary and 

Secondary Educatio?i 




Cost of Public Libraries 







aSome small additional grants are made to county' libraries and association libraries. 

104. Moreover, 33 per cent of the population of the province is without 
public librar)' service; only 5 per cent of the rural population has this ser- 
vice. The difference between these percentages is partly caused by the diflB- 
culty of administering public libraries in small centres and in rural areas. 
At present, county councils ha\'e no power to establish public libraries. 
With the establishment of larger administrative areas for public library 
purposes, the problem would become relatively simple. It has been solved 
by county libraries in Great Britain and elsewhere. A public book service 
by 'Taookmobiles" passed the experimental stage over 13 years ago and is 
now a well established method of book distribution in Canada, Britain, and 
the United States. Under present conditions, even suburban areas are 
usually without library service, although in this case adequate urban 
libraries are in the vicinity. Here, the solution is the establishment of "metro- 
politan areas" for library purposes to enable libraries of larger towns and 
cities to extend their services beyond their municipal boundaries where 
such procedure would provide the most satisfactorv service for the whole 

105. Government grants, as compared with those of a few years ago, 
have been generally increased, and recognition has been given in the 
"weighted" grants to the certification of librarians with a view to the im- 
provement of service. Nevertheless, if public library service is regarded as 
an educational service, the grants remain pitifullv low. A substantial grant 
approximately equal to local expenditure on public libraries would be the 
best stimulus to local endeavour. The development of work with boys and 
girls should be made one of the conditions of the weighted grants. 

106. There is no doubt that the Public Libraries Branch of the Depart- 
ment of Education needs considerable expansion. The Director should be 
provided with adequate field officers and not be expected to traverse the 
whole province and carr\' on his office work at the same time. He should be 


provided witli librarians who can specialize in work with boys and girls and 
young people, and who can give guidance and assistance to small public 
and school libraries. 

(4) Provincial Library 

107. Even with more adequate grants, public libraries in small centres 
will be unable to offer the range of services given in the larger cities. An 
expensive book bought tor a large library might be used by twenty readers 
in that library. Quite apart from lack of funds, it would be uneconomical 
for a small library to purchase the book for the needs of perhaps only a 
single reader. Yet readers in small centres and in rural areas should not 
suffer because of this fact. The local library and the individual rural reader 
should be able to borrow such a book from a provincial library. A reader 
anywhere in the province should be assured that any reasonable request 
for any particular book would be met. This is not a high-flown ideal. Such 
a standard of public book suppl)- now applies throughout the United King- 
dom. The British County Libraries issue a statement which reads: 

The County Library postal service brings the resources of the nation's 
libraries within your reach. 

108. British Columbia has a provincial library administered on a basis 
similar to that used in the United Kingdom; it also gives a complete refer- 
ence service by mail to readers in all parts of the province. Quebec has pur- 
chased the St. Sulpice Library with a view to establishing a similar service. 
Plans are afoot for some such service in Manitoba. Prince Edward Island 
has worked out a kind of provincial library service by combining the books 
of the Legislative Librarv and the Charlottetown Public Library. 

109. A provincial library would meet many specialized needs which 
have been brought to our attention and would include the lending of plays, 
music scores, and probablv films. It would also provide a province-wide 
reference service by mail and establish and maintain a "union catalogue" of 
the books in the "reading" libraries within the province. This would enable 
scholars, research workers, and other readers with specialized needs to find 
what is available in their particular field, and would be a guide to small 
libraries in their "borrowings". 

110. We therefore recommend 

that a provincial librari/ he established to serve as a reservoir from which 
public libraries and individual readers might borrow books which the 
local public library is unable to purchase, and to provide a province- 
wide reference service bi/ mail. 
The erection of a separate building for this purpose and the provision of 
necessary books would involve large financial expenditures. Therefore, to 
effect economy, wc recommend as an alternative 


tJiat the proposed provincml library be based on an existing public 
library which already possesses a large book stock and microfilm or 
photostat facilities. 
The most logical and economical method would appear to be to make use 
of the facilities of the Toronto Public Library, which has the necessary land 
area and experienced personnel, and which is now, to a limited extent, act- 
ing on a provincial basis for library purposes. Accommodation could be 
extended as required. We further recommend 

(a) that county councils be empowered and encouraged to establish 
public library services; and that the formation of metropolitan areas 
for library service be promoted; 

(b) that the establishment and operation of classroom libraries in ele- 
mentary schools continue to be encouraged; and that public libraries 
be stimulated to establish boys' and girls' departments and, where 
special conditions so require, to establish and administer school 
libraries as distinct from classroom libraries; 

(c) that the establishment and operation of school libraries be continued 
as a requirement for all post-elementary schools; that they be in 
charge of persons certificated both as teachers and librarians; that 
standards of administration be set up under the guidance of the 
provincial Director of Public Library Service; and that public 
libraries be stimulated to establish adequate young people's depart- 
ments as distinct from the workshop aspect of post-elementary 
school libraries; 

( d ) that the amount of legislative grants to public libraries be increased 
to approximately 50 per cent of their total expenditures; and that 
library service for boys and girls and young people be added to the 
factors which at present determine the distribution of grants; 

(e) that the Public Libraries Branch of the Department of Education 
be expanded to include a field officer for general inspectional and 
guidance work and a librarian speciallif trained in work with boys 
and girls and young people, who will inspect libraries and also give 
guidance in implementing the above recommendations concerning 
library service for boys and girls and young people. 

Research and Experimentation in Education 

111. Throughout most of the history of the world educational progress 
has been slow. Indeed, there have been periods when, for centuries, edu- 
cation was static or actually retrogressed. Today, there is such an accelera- 
tion in the rate at which scientific discoveries are altering man's environ- 
ment that fear is often expressed that man is being given new power faster 
than he can develop capacity to handle it, and that he must perish unless, 
through education, he can adjust himself to changing conditions. It is 
obvious that developments in education are much less dramatic and far- 


reaching than in the broad field of science. Yet it is essential that education 
in a changing world should adapt itself to new circumstances if it is to be 
of real worth and remain in touch with reality; and the need for change 
spells a need for research and experimentation. So long as education is 
static, research and experimentation are not required; but when develop- 
ment is demanded, both become necessary to ensure that changes are made 
with sound judgment based on findings obtained by scientific inquiry. 

112. The present urgent need for research, including experimentation, 
is fully recognized by leading educationists. No longer is it felt that age or 
authority alone is sufficient to sanctify a theory, or that custom alone is 
sufficient to justify a practice. Rather is it believed that even time-hallowed 
traditions must be examined impartially and that educational theories and 
practices must stand or fall by the test of objective inquiry. It may be 
desired, for example, to learn whether the formal study of English grammar 
is an aid to the cultivation of correct English usage; whether a well bal- 
anced mid-day lunch will sufiiciently improve the health and educational 
achievement of pupils to justify the cost; or whether there are gross 
inequalities in educational opportunity. The answers to these and man\- 
like problems can be secured onlv through experimentation and research. 

113. Indeed, the wiser and more experienced among those who are en- 
trusted with the shaping of educational patterns have learned that they 
cannot lightly trust their own unsupported opinions. They have seen too 
many of the commonly held opinions exploded by the findings of experi- 
mentation. Research probes into eveiy corner of the vast field of education. 
Investigators have studied, among other problems, pupil health, school 
buildings, personality and character development, vocational guidance, 
units of administration, school finance, and teacher training. Today, con- 
sequently, research influences the nature of educational progress to a verv 
considerable extent. 

114. The briefs presented to us support tliese opinions. In almost every- 
one of them a need for educational research is implied. In a number, specific 
requests for research studies are made. In this latter group, mention may 
be made of the briefs presented by the following organizations: Toronto 
Special Class Teachers' Association (Brief 4); the Special Class Section of 
the Ontario Educational Association (Brief 11); the Ontario Vocational 
Guidance Association (Brief 29); the Ontario School Trustees' and Rate- 
payers' Association ( Brief 36 ) ; the Teachers of Art and Crafts Section of 
the Ontario Educational Association ( Brief 57 ) ; the Ontario Educational 
Association (Brief 69); the Committee on School Costs, Ontario School 
Inspectors' Association ( Brief 85 ) ; and the Ontario Teachers' Federation 
(Brief 169). 

115. Research and Experiment in E,ducation (Brief 90), presented by 
the Research Committee of the Ontario School Inspectors' Association, is 
the most comprehensive statement received on this subject. It emphasizes 


the importance of research in determining educational progress and points 
out the deficiency in education in this respect as compared with industry, 
which spends milhons of dollars annually on research. It points out that 
Great Britain, the United States, and other countries have set examples in 
the establishment of research foundations. Indicative of the extent of re- 
search deemed essential is the suggestion of the Research Committee that 
it is necessary to provide for observation, study, research, and experiment, 
in methods of instruction, individual differences, diagnostic achievement 
testing, curriculum, vocabulary, education of handicapped children, child 
psychology, statistics, materials of instruction, and adult education. To im- 
plement their proposed programme, the Research Committee of the Ontario 
School Inspectors' Association recommended that: 

1. The Department of Education finance and greatly increase the expenditure on 
educational research; 

2. A greater number of educational research workers be trained; 

3. Psychological, reading, vision, hearing, and diagnostic clinics be developed; 

4. Educational surveys be conducted to train teachers and oSicials to view their 
problems in the light of actual existing conditions; 

5. Diagnostic and achievement tests be prepared to reduce the use of foreign 
materials and to provide Ontario standarcis; 

6. Bibliographies, reports, abstracts, and research studies be published and cii- 
culated widely among school instiuctors, trustees, and officials; 

7. The work of voluntary research organizations in the profession be encouraged; 

8. The stafiF of the Department of Educational Research at the Ontario College 
of Education be expanded; 

9. A Director of Educational Research be appointed by the Department of Edu- 
cation to initiate and conduct research and to act as liaison officer between 
research organizations or between individuals and research organizations. (A 
Director of Educational Research might also act as an adviser on curricula.) 

In its brief, the Research Committee of the Ontario School Inspectors' Asso- 
ciation stated further that: 

( 1 ) Since there are no wealthy research foundations in Canada, the Department 
of Education should finance and publicize educational research; 

(2) The Department of Education should provide 

(a) assistantships in the Department of Educational Research; 

(b) surveys of urban and rural units; 

(c) circulation of reports; 

(d) grants-in-aid to individuals and organizations where worthy research is 

In regard to the extent of financial support, the opinion of the Ontario 

School Inspectors' Association was that: 

... the budgets of the voluntary and state-supported research organizations should 

be increased by five times the present annual expenditure at once. When research 

personnel is available, the present annual expenditure should be ten times as 


116, In most of the briefs to which reference has been made, research 
is urged in those areas of education in which the respective sponsors are 


particularly interested. In the briefs which go beyond this, stress is laid on 
the need for expanded research machinery with an enlarged research bud- 
get, and for better methods of publicizing the findings of research studies. 
It is certain that unless the first of these needs is met few of the other 
recommendations can be implemented. 

117. In our opinion, the major functions of an educational research 
organization in this province must be: 

( 1 ) To conduct or supervise long-term research in matters relating to edu- 
cation, including improvement in the techniques of research. 

(2) To conduct or supervise experiments in schools and educational clinics. 

(3) To supervise graduate studies in education and, through this and other 
means, to train research workers. 

(4) To conduct or supervise siuveys and experiments and to provide other 
services of a like nature, at the request of the Department of Education 
or of local education authorities. 

(5) Upon request, to act in a liaison capacity between research organiza- 
tions or between individuals and research organizations and to co- 
ordinate the research work of individuals and voluntary research 

( 6 ) To publicize the findings of research studies and to provide information 
to interested parties, particularly to members of the teaching pro- 
fession and local and provincial school officials. 

118. The organization and administration of educational research in 
Ontario should be planned as economically as possible in view of the fact 
that our population is small and our financial resources for this purpose are 
limited. If efforts are dispersed, some of the functions, perhaps those which 
are most important, may not be fully discharged. The establishment of a 
cential organization, therefore, seems to be indicated. We do not suggest 
that educational research should be placed under the sole contiol of a 
central authority, but that expert advice and assistance be centrally located, 
and that it be widely known the\^ are available to those who are interested 
in this field. After studying the methods adopted in other provinces and 
countries, we have come to the conclusion that research in education in 
Ontario must be financed primarilv through provincial grants from the De- 
partment of Education. We favour the establishment of an organization 
associated with the provincial University, to which research problems of the 
Department of Education and local education authorities can be referred, 
rather than the establishment of a research division within the Department 
of Education itself. The organization we suggest would be most suitable 
for conducting wide research and supervising graduate work. 

119. Our belief has been strengthened by experience in our own 
province where the Department of Educational Research of the Ontario 
College of Education in the Universitv' of Toronto has been in existence 
for over fifteen years. Its growth has been continuous, and it is now stafiFed 



b) a group of competent and experienced research workers. The present 
organization consists of a Director, an Assistant Director, and three assis- 
tants, with a permanent secretarial staff and a group of temporary or part- 
time employees. We do not consider it feasible to estabhsh a research 
division within the Department of Education and, at the same time, to 
maintain and strengthen the existing Department of Educational Research 
of the Ontario College of Education. Widi two organizations dedicated to 
research in education, it would be diflBcult, if not impossible, to avoid con- 
fusion and waste through duplication of effort. As between establishing a 
new research body and strengthenhig an existing organization which is 
rendering ejfficient service, we believe the latter is the preferable alternative. 

120. The Department of Educational Research, according to our in- 
formation, has been discharging nearly all the major functions which we 
have outlined in an earlier paragraph. In our opinion, however, it should 
pay more attention to the conduct and supervision of experiments in schools, 
to liaison between research organizations and between individuals and 
research organizations, and to co-ordination of the research work of other 
people. Finally, enough has not been done to publicize the findings of re- 
search and to make them available to interested groups and individuals. 

121. The College of Education offers graduate work toward the degrees 
of M.A. and Ph.D. in Educational Theory, and toward the degrees of 
B.Paed. and D.Paed. in Pedagogy. The Research Department can readily 
direct candidates for degrees to research projects and, through fellowships, 
assistantships, and part-time employment of students, can constantly train 
additional research workers. There is ample evidence to support the belief 
that it has become the recognized research body for the Department of 
Education and for local education authorities. 

122. The suggestions in Brief 90 that "The work of voluntary research 
organizations in the profession be encouraged," and that "The Department 
of Education should provide grants-in-aid to individuals and organizations 
where worthy research is attempted," merit serious consideration. Enter- 
prising people in the profession who have the initiative to experiment should 
be encouraged. It is appropriate to draw attention, at this point, to various 
professional groups new engaged in research. The Research Committee of 
the Ontario School Inspectors' Association, instituted in 1943, has been 
most diligent in conducting a wide variet)^ of studies. The yearbook of this 
group is worthy of wide circulation. Inspectors occupy a strategic position 
both for conducting research in schools and for fostering proper attitudes 
toward research. Their committee has always worked in close co-operation 
with the Department of Educational Research, to the benefit of both. There 
has been a limited amount of research in normal schools, which, in the 
interests of teacher training, should be expanded. The Ontario Teachers' 
Federation and its constituent bodies, through appropriate committees, also 
provide for research. We suggest that the staff of the Department of Edu- 


cational Research should, upon request, undertake tlie supervision and 
co-ordination of the work of all groups engaged in educational research. 
This should be regarded as an important responsibility. There is a fairly 
adequate research library in the Department of Educational Research, and 
full use should be made of it. 

123. Research could be encouraged through the provision by the De- 
partment of Education or other agencies of fellowships or assistantships in 
the Department of Educational Research. An assistant holding a fellow- 
ship generally needs training and supervision, but the research techniques 
he acquires will enhance his value to education in the province. Grants-in- 
aid are a means of encouraging research at small cost, but, except in un- 
usual circumstances, thev should not exceed out-of-pocket expenses in- 
curred. When a grant-in-aid is awarded, the grantor not only has the right 
but is also under an obligation to insist that the research be conducted 
under competent guidance, which could normally be given by the Depart- 
ment of Educational Research. Where grants-in-aid are made by or through 
the Department of Education, they should be distributed by designated 
officials of the Minister. 

124. Research is costly in time, energy, and money, all of which may 
be largely wasted if results are not made known. The findings of research 
should, through articles and abstracts, be given the widest possible pub- 
licit)' among those who are most likely to profit from them. This view was 
supported in briefs submitted to us. For example, Brief 169, submitted bv 
the Ontario Teachers' Federation, suggested "That the Department of Edu- 
cation be asked to keep teachers informed of educational experiments by 
the publication of bulletins and pamphlets, as well as by the fullest possible 
use of our professional magazines." Brief 90, submitted by the Committee 
on Research of the Ontario School Inspectors' Association, suggested that 
"Bibliographies, reports, abstracts, and research studies be published and 
circulated widely among school instructors, trustees, and cflB^ia's." Brief 
202, submitted by a group of women inspectors, supervisors, and normal 
school masters and instructors, suggested "Provision for the dissemination 
of recent findings of scientific research among teachers in service . . ." In 
our opinion, publication of research findings should be undertaken by the 
Department of Educational Research. 

125. There is available today a wide variety of techniques and instru- 
ments for diagnostic, prognostic, and remedial work in education: intelli- 
gence tests; aptitude tests; diagnostic tests; instruments for the measure- 
ment of visual and auditory acuity; etc. As far as we can determine, no 
organized attempt is made in Ontario to evaluate their eflFectiveness or to 
determine whether or not they are suitable for use in the schools. The Voca- 
tional Guidance Centre of the Ontario College of Education does con- 
tribute toward such an attempt, but mainly by acting as a distributing 


centre for the selection and sale of guidance materials. The Department 
of Educational Research, either alone or preferably in co-operation with 
the Vocational Guidance Centre, should establish what might be called a 
"Research Clinic" for the purpose of examining and evaluating techniques 
and instruments. These findings should be made available to interested edu- 
cators. The main responsibility of the Department of Educational Research, 
however, must be to conduct and supervise research, not to demonstrate 
the use of instruments and techniques. 

126. With reference to the organization of research and experimentation 
in education in Ontario, we recommend 

(a) that the Department of Educational Research in the Ontario Col- 
lege of Education be recognized as the educational research bureau 
for the province; 

(b) that the activities of the Department of Educational Research be 
financed through provincial grants from the Department of Edu- 

( c ) that the Department of Education provide funds, and solicit addi- 
tional amounts of money from other sources, to establish scholar- 
ships tenable in the College of Education in the University of 
Toronto for purposes of educational research; 

(d) that, through grants-in-aid, the Department of Education encourage 
research conducted by individuals and educational organizations 
under the supervision of the Ontario College of Education; 

(e) that the Department of Educational Research prepare and distribute 
widely information relating to the findings of educational research 
and experimentation; 

(/) that the Department of Educational Research and the Vocational 
Guidance Centre, through the establishment of a Research Clinic, 
investigate and evaluate developments in instruments and tech- 
niques for diagnostic, prognostic, and remedial work in education, 
and publicize their findings; 

(g) that, upon request, the Department of Educational Research co- 
ordinate, supervise, and assist in research activities in education 
undertaken by individuals or voluntary organizations. 

Citizenship and the School Programme 

127. Two World Wars within one generation, with the consequent social 
upheaval, have focussed attention upon the need for an adequate prepara- 
tion of our young people for the responsibilities of citizenship. In no form 
of society are these responsibilities so great and so difficult to define as in 
a democracy. The term "citizen" connotes an individual as an individual, 
as a member of a family, and as a member of a local, national, and inter- 
national community. Active democratic citizenship requires a consciousness 


of personal independence and social interdependence, a high degree of 
understanding of, and tolerant co-operation in, public life, and the mainten- 
ance of high standards of conduct in private and public afiFairs. 

128. Our democratic way of life is characterized by a respect for per- 
sonal freedom, a regard for the authority of law, and acceptance of the 
supremacy, in its proper sphere, of a government elected by secret ballot 
under universal adult suffrage. The following statement of the character- 
istics of a good citizen will meet with general acceptance: 

The good citizen must, for instance, possess a love of truth and a trained knowl- 
edge of how to seek it; he must beheve in reason and know how to think clearly 
and to recognise prejudice. He must be a sufficiently good judge of values to 
choose with wisdom and courage those who shall represent him in Parliament, 
in local government and on committees. He must be willing and competent to act 
in support of the democratic way of life in which he believes. Above all, he must 
have a deep concern for human personality and for the establishment and main- 
tenance of conditions that make the good life available for all.^ 

Most people will also agree with the following purposes of training for 
citizenship, expressed in a report of the Advisory Council on Education in 
Scotland : 

(1) to become good husbands and wives and fathers and mothers; 

(2) to develop the spirit of responsibility and of tolerant co-operation with their 
fellows in work or leisure activities; 

(3) to take an intelligent and independent part in the affairs of the community, 
both local and national; 

(4) to have a sense of membership of the world community.' 

129. Recognition of the problem, however, and agreement as to aims 
have not provided an immediate solution. That the status of education for 
citizenship is receiving increasing attention is evident in the reports of the 
English consultative committee. Spens, for example, with reference to this 
topic, states: 

The importance of the problem has been emphasised in recent years from many 
quarters. It is scarcely possible to exaggerate that importance, and it is not too 
much to say that all teaching should contribute to this end. On the extent to wliich 
the youth of this country can be fitted to fulfil later their duties, and to take advan- 
tage of their opportunities, as citizens of a democratic State may well turn the 
whole future of democracy . . .' 

Also generally recognized is a need for a type of education which, in terms 
of citizenship, will yield the results desired. More and more, it is insisted 
that the school should assume the major responsibility for providing the 
kind of education which will prepare children to play their parts in a demo- 

^Citizens Growing Up at Home, in School and After, Ministry of Education Pamphlet 
No. 16, London: His Majesty's Stationery Office, 1949, p. 19. 

'^Training for Citizenship, Report of tlie Advisory Council on Education in Scodand, 
Edinburgh: l[is Majesty's Stationery Office, 1944, p. 4. 

^Will Spens, Report of the Consultative Committee on Secondary Education, London: 
His Majesty's Stationery Office, 1939, p. xxxvii. 


cratic society. On the other hand, patterns of behaviour which are based 
upon Christian ideals, and are acceptable to society, can be realized only 
through the co-operative efforts of the home, the school, and the church. 
The participation of home and school associations in this task and the teach- 
ing of religious education in public elementar)' schools are evidences of a 
willingness to join forces for the common good. This is most heartening; 
a philosophv of democracy cannot be imposed on the people; it must grow 
in, and develop from, them. Our only hope of an adequate training for 
citizenship lies in education. But there must be unity of purpose and agree- 
ment as to ideals; confusion will inevitably residt if the standards of con- 
duct set for school life are not accepted and practised in the home and in 
daily Ufe, including that of business and industry. 

130. Training for citizenship begins in the home; the atmosphere of the 
home and the standards of the family largely shape the child as a citizen. 
Societ\% through the school and other means, can but supplement the eflForts 
of the home. But the beliefs and values held by parents are partly deter- 
mined by those generally accepted in the societ)^ of which they form a part. 
And, as is generally recognized, the ideas and ideals from which our stan- 
dards of conduct are derived find their origin in religion. A spiritual faith 
based on absolute values is the rock upon which character and conduct are 
built. For a society based upon Christianity, the ideal society and the ideal 
citizen are portrayed in the teachings and life of Jesus. Thence we derive 
the spiritual foundation for our homes, schools, and society; and this fact 
provides a challenge to our churches to arrest the decline in Our Christian 
beliefs and Christian way of life, and thereby to assist, as only they can, 
in the common task of educating our vouth for citizenship in a Christian 

131. But education in the home, in the church, and in the community 
is not \vithin the terms of our remit; our task, however, includes the con- 
sideration of ways and means whereby education in schools may contribute 
to training for citizenship. Education of our youth at the expense of the 
public in provincially controlled schools can be justified only on the ground 
that it materially improves the quality of citizenship. To devise ways and 
means of providing training for better citizenship has been an aim in all 
our discussions. This is shown in our recommendations for the reorganiza- 


tion of the stages of the educational system; in our insistence upon the need 
for a long period of compulsory school attendance; in our emphasis upon 
the importance of the professional preparation of teachers; and in our ex- 
pressed desire to have the advantages of a sound cultural background made 
available to all children. 

132. There is general agreement in regard to the goals to be attained 
in training for citizenship. If our way of life is to survive, we must inculcate 
in our children an indelible and pervading faith in democracy. To par- 
ticipate in the life of the community effectively and with understanding. 


tliey must obtain knowledge. Coupled with this must be the development 
of high ideals of private and public Ufe and of initiative, so that, of their 
own volition, they will recognize, accept, and discharge their responsibili- 
ties for the common weal. 

133. As to the means to be used in school to realize our aims, there is 
lack of unanimity. Some firmly believe in stern and strict discipline, rigorous 
re£fimentation, and unending drill in a course of instruction in civics. It is 
true that discipline and a knowledge of civics are essential, but, if carried 
to extremes, such methods might well result in the training of robots, sub- 
missive to the lash of a dictator's whip. On the other hand, lack of control 
and unlimited freedom will just as surely produce selfish and self-willed 
individuals recognizing no authority, incapable of co-operation, and devoid 
of self-discipline. To accept either extreme will lead but to disaster. 

134. Fortunately, experiment and experience point to a solution. In 
training for citizenship, instruction is important, but practice is the main 
thing. Thus, cliildren must be instructed in ideals and types of behaviour, 
but, above all, must live in situations in which these are practised. Edu- 
cation for citizenship is a general aim of education not to be realized 
within the relatively narrow bounds of any individual subject of instruction. 
It has to do with imparting information, but, even more, it has to do with 
the development of social habits and skills, neighbourly attitudes, human 
understanding, and spiritual ideals. Courses of study, methods of teaching, 
and modes of management must make their contributions; but education 
for citizenship is an ideal which must permeate the whole educational pro- 
gramme. It is a cumulative product of the entire school life, and the neces- 
sary behaviour patterns can be developed only when ample opportunity is 
provided for adequate practice. 

135. Good citizenship is more likely to be achieved when there is full 
recognition of the importance of adapting activities and learning to the 
level of the learners. This is of prime importance. The school is not only a 
community; it is composed of many communities forming an entity that 
is, in turn, part of a larger community. There is need for further experi- 
mentation to determine what constitutes good citizenship at each level of 
child development. It is our conviction that if ways and means are perfected 
to make possible the attainment of good citizenship at each level of the 
school programme the graduates will be good citizens and assume their 
full responsibilities at the adult level. The converse is also true. If the 
learning of concepts is imposed at too early a stage, and if, in our desire to 
assure good citizenship, particularly in the political field, we attempt to 
force growth in the immature, only harm can result. 

136. Control and freedom must follow a natural and orderly plan of 
development. Freedom must be given gradually, under guidance; only 
when the proper use of freedom has been learned, can we trust the grad- 
uates of the schools with the full freedom they will enjoy in a democracy. 



To give children freedom before they are ready for it causes confusion and 
niav lead to a warping of development: to withliold from them freedom 
which they have earned is to retard development. To strike a proper bal- 
ance must ever be the goal. Pupils must learn that freedom is not the right 
to do as they please; this is licence, which leads to anarchy. True freedom 
is freedom under law, which carries with it corresponding obligations. 

137. In the final anahsis, the responsibility for education for citizenship 
in the individual school rests with the teacher; his personality, his methods 
of teaching, indeed his wav of life, will exert a powerful influence. Where 
a teacher expresses worthy ideals in his discipline and management and 
provides for school activities which will develop those attributes of char- 
acter which are held in high regard, a good beginning is assured. Where, 
in addition, friendly and mutually helpful relations exist among home, 
school, and church, an environment will be established which will aid im- 
measurably in the training of better citizens. 

138. Much might also be achieved by a new emphasis upon certain 
aspects of the work of the school. Our ideals are patent; what is required 
is reasonable proof, following experimentation, that certain procedures are 
effective and might be applied in the schools of the province with some 
assurance of success. It is with this in rnind that we commend the experi- 
mental work in citizenship begun by the local education authorities in 
Kirkland Lake, Welland, and Fort Erie, under the direction of the Depart- 
ment of Education. Although insufficient time has elapsed for the results 
to be assessed, yet in such endeavours lies the best hope of devising courses 
of studies, activities, and teaching methods adequate to achieve good 

139. A thorough study should be made in order to determine what 
acti\'ities of school life are most useful in the development of desirable 
behaviour patterns. Ideals, however worthy, must be expressed if they are 
to yield habitual modes of action. It is in this aspect of citizenship training 
that there is the greatest need for experiment. All activities should be re- 
garded as potential opportunities for training in citizenship. New activities 
within and without the school should be planned in such a way as to aflFord 
opportunity for pupils to assume responsibilities and to work in harmony 
with others. There are many ways in which student participation in demo- 
cratic processes can be encouraged. The student council, representing some 
measure of student self-government, the clubs and other co-curricular 
activities largely under student sponsorship and control, the school assembly, 
and community enterprises, all offer opportrmities which should be 

Contribution of School Subjects 

140. The inculcation of worthy ideals should begin as soon as the child 
enrols in school and should be continued with increasing emphasis. Almost 


every subject of study can be taught so as to make a worthwhile contri- 
bution to citizenship training. But Enghsh, social studies, and religious 
education, which will be obligatory in the reorganized curriculum, are 
especially valuable for the promotion of such ideals. 

( 1 ) Religious Education 

141. The moral and spiritual lessons of the Scriptures should deeply 
influence the conduct and behaviour of children in their daily lives. But 
their effect will be lost unless their applications to daily life are skilfully 
and effectively made, with full sincerity and faith on the part of the in- 
structor. As in no other subject, the emphasis in teaching can be placed 
upon conscience, service to others, and responsibility. 

142. Corporate worship affords both direct and indirect opportunities 
for training in citizenship. The former arise through pupils conducting 
part of the service, and through celebration of special days of observance. 
The latter arise from the moral and spiritual values of worship, the sense 
of fellowship, the experience of silence and quiet prayer. Corporate wor- 
ship in school assembly, in church, or in chapel has a deep and abiding 
significance for most children; the emotional fervour and faith so engen- 
dered are the springs from which well the moral and spiritual values upon 
which conduct and behaviour depend. 

(2) English 

143. Training in the understanding and use of English must be a prime 
purpose of education. To fall short of an acceptable standard in this field 
is to remain uneducated. To achieve such a standard is a prerequisite for 
all intellectual progress. Without it, instruction in other subjects of the 
curriculum, where English is used to express thoughts and comprehend 
ideas, must inevitably fail. For any pupil in our schools to be less than fully 
articulate in English means the retarding or halting of his development to 
some extent. From the point of view of the development of the whole child, 
competency in the understanding and use of English must come first. 

144. From the point of view of the community, it is our opinion that 
democracy itself cannot survive in an illiterate or semi-literate population. 
Democracy needs a high general level of ability to understand and use 
language, coupled with a critical awareness of the possibility of misuse in 
what is written or spoken by others. With children the spoken word must 
be given precedence over the written. The former comes first in the de- 
velopment of each child. It looms large in his daily life, and in the main 
determines his social acceptance and adequacy. Not that the use and un- 
derstanding of the written word should be neglected in education; we dare 
not do this in these days when propaganda and demagogy are rendered 
immeasurably more dangerous through a flood of newspapers, pamphlets, 
and books, fervently pleading special causes on behalf of special interests. 


145. We have been disquieted by the common complaint that the 
graduates of our schools have often failed to attain an acceptable standard 
in English. Unisersit)- and secondar)' school teachers complain that their 
students are unable to express ideas, either orally or in writing, in lucid, 
accurate, and fluent English. The criticism is echoed by employers, who 
complain bitterly that young persons make errors in spelling, punctuation, 
and grammar and cannot express themselves logically and clearly in speak- 
ing, even in the idiom of debased English that they commonly employ. 

146. With tliis contention we cannot fully agree. Similar wails have 
been voiced for at least a century. Nevertheless, the truth of much of the 
criticism is admitted by teachers of English, who are themselves dissatisfied 
with the present situation. In Brief 114, entitled Teaching of English and 
History, submitted by the English and History Association of the Province 
of Ontario, it is stated: 

Teacher training colleges, universities, educationalists, and even business men 
deplore the inability of our young people to express themselves accurately. We 
feel that the criticism is justified, but that the teachers are not to blame inasmuch 
as they have large classes and insufficient time for the correction of written work. 

In Brief 31, entitled Speech Training, submitted by the Toronto District 
Association of Teachers of Speech, another aspect of this same problem is 

The low standard in spoken English of the graduate of our school system is the 
evidence of the need of such training to overcome unpleasant, slovenly, unin- 
telligible speech . . . One of the barriers which creates the isolation of the so-called 
'under-privileged classes' is poor speech. It is the responsibility of a democratic 
society to so train its future citizens that this artificial barrier is removed. Many 
potential leaders are either inarticulate or inhibited through a lack of confidence 
in their abihty to speak efifectively. Such conditions constitute a serious loss to 
society and should be prevented by a progressive, educational policy. 

We readily admit that we do not have the necessary training, experience, 
or ability to propose an acceptable solution for this problem. But we have 
reached certain definite conclusions on the matter and have framed some 
suggestions which we feel may be helpful. 

147. One obvious fault, it seems to us, lies in the treatment of English 
as merely another subject on the curriculum. It is not just another subject. 
The correct understanding and use of English is a challenge to every 
teacher— in every class, in every subject, and in all co-curricular activities. 
While we see no acceptable alternative mode of organization, yet we 
must point out the inherent danger of having a department of English and 
specialist teachers of the subject. It is easy for others members of the staff 
to assume the attitude that the responsibility for "English" rests solely 
with the specialist teachers. This seems to be a rather common point of 
view, particularly in the upper grades of the present secondary schools. 
Perhaps it accounts for the fact that many teachers apparently pay little 


attention to standards of oral and written English in a student's work in 
fields other than language. Some teachers are seemingly unconscious of the 
fact that their personal standards in oral and written English are unsatis- 
factory, a fact which was apparent in evidence presented to us and in class- 
rooms which we visited. If the teacher habitually makes errors in grammar 
and fails to set an example of accurate and fluent use of English, can it be 
expected that pupils will do otherwise? There is need here for definite 
improvement: every teacher should maintain high standards in the use of 
English, for himself and for his pupils, in all subjects; and teacher train- 
ing schools should take vigorous action to ensure that their graduates are 
highlv proficient in English, both oral and viritten. 

148. In defence of the school it is frequently maintained that the stand- 
ards of English usage in the home and in the community in general are 
relatively low. This is true. A surprisingly large proportion of our popu- 
lation has remained functionally illiterate despite compulsory school atten- 
dance laws and free public education. The English used in some homes, in 
many films, in some books and magazines, and in the "funnies", is atrocious. 
Hence, the schools must prepare to wage a protracted and exhausting 
battle; but it is onlv in the schools, and through education, that the fight 
for good English can be won. 

149. There are numerous opportunities in the school programme for 
the teacher to stress the use of correct English and for the student to develop 
fluency of expression. Attention need only be drawn to a few to illustrate 
the point: talks by pupils, debates, dramatics, questions and answers, 
group discussions and committees, and written compositions and school 
exercises. The opportimities will be innumerable if English is emphasized 
in all subjects and by every teacher. Through a study of great English 
literature, students will learn to appreciate the high standards, the inventive- 
ness, and the creative faculties of the masters. In this literature is stored 
centuries of experience and the wisdom of the ages. The student can obtain 
from it much more than pleasure and recreation; he can obtain comfort, 
counsel, and enlightenment, as he reaches the age of questioning and of 
reflection upon the fundamental problems of life; he can obtain an appreci- 
ation of our culture and tradition. 

150. We mention but briefly the rules and usages of spelling, punctu- 
ation, and grammar, though these are not unimportant. Any person who 
disregards or ignores these conventions creates a most unfavourable impres- 
sion upon reader or audience. This must be brought forcefully to the 
attention of the pupil, and he must be set a high standard in his own usage. 
But the training must be functional and appropriate to the child's stage of 
language development. Grammar, for example, has great value; but if taught 
as an isolated subject, as a set of rules to be memorized, little of it may 
be transferred to oral and written English; if poorly taught, a more barren 
and profitless course is difiicult to imagine. 


(3) Social Studies 

151. The subject of social studies affords an excellent opportunity for 
training in citizenship. Social studies, an integration of history and geo- 
crraphv, elementar\' economics, civics, and related subjects, has aims very 
different from those of the courses in history and geography in earlier years. 
Even in junior grades, the course in history was formerly arranged chrono- 
logicallv, divided into periods, and often not presented in such a way as 
to gi\e a comprehensive \iew of history. In geography, detailed facts- 
capes, bavs, lakes and rivers, capitals, commodities, climate— often relating 
to countries of which the child could have no knowledge and in which he 
could have no interest, were methodicallv memorized. This practice has 
been changed because it has been demonstrated that younger children have 
little appreciation of \^'hat lies bevond the here and now. The studv of 
historv' and geography must await development in the child of a sense of 
time and space. Until the child is ready, the facts with their eflFects and 
causes fail to take on life, and lie inert. 

152. The present practice in social studies is to begin with a relatively 
simple course having limited aims. In the earlier years in elementary 
schools, studv is restricted to the everyday activities of the home and local 
community. As the child becomes more mature, while the aims do not 
greatly change, the horizons are gradually expanded in space and time. 
The aims finally include: to help the child to understand something of the 
world in which he lives; to develop proper attitudes toward other people; 
to gain knowledge of his own country; and, later, to extend his knowledge 
of, and interest in, life in other lands. 

153. Through social studies, the pupil should gain some conception 
of the complex factors that influence human conduct. The programme, there- 
fore, should help him to discover his place and to assume his responsibilities 
in society. Man's stor\^ in any age or in anv place is a legitimate field 
for investigation, provided it has significance for the life of todav. Rules 
of conduct set down in the Ten Commandments or certain concepts ex- 
pressed bv Plato are "new" since they are applicable to modern societ^^ The 
aim, therefore, should be to select those experiences and influences that 
have been most significant in determining man's successes and failures. 
Those which most closelv relate to our own background should receive 
special emphasis. We cannot properly understand the Canadian way of 
life without a study of the cultures brought from many lands, in particular 
from the British Isles and France. A study of the immediate and pressing 
problems of societv is also desirable. Pupils should become aware of the 
magnitude and complexity of these problems and, at the appropriate stage 
of their development, be guided to a recognition of their own responsibilitv 
in relation to them. 

154. The division of human life and relations into history and geographv 
in the school curriculum has alwavs been artificial. Thev are but two 


aspects of the stor)- of man: geography is concerned with man at present 
and includes, in its wider sense, economic and social history; history like- 
wise, to be meaningful, must include a study of geography. The better 
teachers have long recognized this truth and, in effect, have taught "social 
studies", whether the subject was labelled history or geography. Today, 
owing partlv to a much deeper understanding of child development, the 
essential unit\' of history and geography is formallv recognized and ex- 
pressed in both the content of the courses and the methods by which social 
studies is taught. 

155. In the light of our present knowledge, it is easy to see why the 
study of civics has been such a dreary and wearisome task for pupil and 
teacher alike. The learning and recitation of divisions of government and 
of their powers, duties, and responsibilities were without meaning to the 
young child. The formal teaching of civics is important only when the 
student is ready for it. The subject can profitably be introduced, in our 
opinion, in the final years of the new secondar)' school. At this point it is 
essential for the student to have a coherent oudine of social and political 
organization together with some knowledge of international affairs. 

156. The proposed new stages of the educational system afford many 
special opportimities for training for citizenship through social studies. 
In the nursery school and kindergarten the child leams to associate, and in 
a very limited way to co-operate, with his fellows. Through the experience 
of satisfaction from the approbation of others, and of dissatisfaction from 
their disapproval, he begins to respect the personal and property rights of 
his fellows, to accept the superior position of the teacher, and to conform 
to school routines and procedures. 

157. In the junior division of the elementary school this process con- 
tinues, so that b)' the time the child is 8 or 9 years of age he wiU have 
become fairly well accustomed to life in the school communitv% though far 
from accomplished in its finer arts. Even at this tender age he may be 
initiated into the citizenship of the neighl30urhood communits' through the 
development of specific habits, such as obeying traflBc signals and respect- 
ing the property' of neighbours. Similarly, he gains an appreciation of the 
function of policemen, firemen, postmen, and others \\'ho directly serve the 
community; and of the builders, merchants, farmers, ph^'sicians, and others 
who serve indirectly. Through these activities, and through excursions, he 
also garners an incidental fund of geographical information about his im- 
mediate neighbourhood. In the senior division of the elementary school he 
may acquire a wid(>r acquaintance with community living through various 
studies, such as the exchange of labour and its products, the use of money, 
and the interdependence of rural and urban communities. The scope of 
these studies may be gradually extended to include the whole of Canada. 
His knowledge of geography is also extended, even bevond Canada itself. 
Concurrently, in each year there may be introduced stories of people in 


other lands, to give a glimpse of the kinship of peoples throughout the world 
with the consequent inculcation of feelings of sympathy and friendliness. 
Patterns of social living and a love of native land may be fostered through 
a studv of biographies, especially of Canadians who have rendered special 
service to their country, and through participation in patriotic ceremonies 
and celebrations. Through brief studies of long ranges of history, under 
such topics as "How Men Build Homes", and "How Men Travel", the pupils 
may gain knowledge of certain elementary principles of social living, such 
as the division of labour, and the interdependence of all members of a 

158. As we noted earlier, ideals of social behaviour tend to develop 
vigorouslv during the period of adolescence. In the new secondary school, 
therefore, the acquisition of information for the purpose of making sound 
judgments on social problems becomes of major importance. In the first 
two vears of his secondary school course the pupil may studv the geo- 
graphy of Canada and, to a lesser extent, of the Commonwealth. In the final 
two vears he may learn about the geography of the world. The point of 
view will be that of a special interest in the customs and daily lives of 
the inhabitants, the natural resources and facilities for production and manu- 
facture, and the trade requirements and facilities for conducting trade. 
He may also begin a study of the election, organization, and function of 
local school boards and local municipal councils. In the final two years he 
may profitablv add the mechanics of government in the province, in the 
Dominion, and in the Commonwealth, provided that the treatment is not 
too elaborate or too profound. 

159. During the secondary school stage, history should be studied 
partly for the purpose of developing a patriotic attitude, partly for the 
purpose of providing a factual approach to the understanding of modem 
conditions and the solution of modem problems, and very little for the pur- 
pose of amassing a mere fund of historical information. Accordinglv, there 
will be opportunities to foster ideals of citizenship through a comparative, 
as well as a particular, study of biographic history and of social movements 
in history. In the first two years the story of national and social growth 
in Canada may be presented through such topics as "Explorations", "The 
Building of Canada", etc., in the treatment of which the biographical 
aspects should be stressed. In the last two years of the secondary school the 
study of political movements in Canada, in the Commonwealth, and in 
other countries, may be undertaken in conjunction with an examination of 
the mechanics of government under such topics as "How the Canadian 
People Gained Government by Law". A further appreciation of certain 
fundamental principles in the growth of civilization may be gained through 
the continued long-range study of history. By somewhat the same method, 
definitions of primary concepts in economy and sociology, such as wealth, 
money, capital, labour, wages, interest, and profit, may be evolved. 


160. The main lines of growth in the development of social skills and 
attitudes will have been fairly well established by the time the student 
completes the new secondary school programme. But these skills and atti- 
tudes can be much more higlily refined. Further education should include 
simplified courses in sociology and economics, based upon a study of world 
histor)^ and world geography, to the end that the principles and laws which 
govern and determine social organization may be induced. Attention may 
be paid also to the social implications of the vocation chosen; the relations 
and functions of labour, management, and capital; and the interdependence 
of all forms of labour. 

(4) Other School Subjects 

161. We need do no more than suggest tlie special opportunities avail- 
able in other subjects of the curriculum for training for citizenship. Through 
a study of foreign languages the student gains an understanding of other 
people and of their culture and traditions, as well as a knowledge of their 
geography and history. From a study of mathematics the student should 
learn to appreciate the nature of proof, logical structure, and deductive 
reasoning, and obtain training in the fundamentals of business transactions. 
In the teaching of science the aim should be to assist the student to under- 
stand the nature and organization of the physical environment, in order 
that he may come to realize man's place in it. In agricultural science the 
student will develop an understanding of the interdependence of rural and 
urban life and of the relationship of agriculture to human welfare and 
national well-being. Music, art, and crafts will be among the major media 
for the expression of feeling and imagination and for the cultivation of taste. 
Vocational subjects will give the future citizen his first introduction to the 
world of work in which his living will be made. 

162. Finally, the individual's contribution as a citizen \vill be limited 
unless he is physically and mentally healthy. In physical and health edu- 
cation the aim should be to promote a realization of the individual's respon- 
sibility for his own physical fitness, to develop efficiency of body move- 
ment in the activities of everyday life, and to encourage varied recreational 
activities, particularly those that can be continued in leisure time. The 
development of habits and attitudes conducive to healthful living will be 
included, as well as a sufiicient knowledge of the body to explain the 
need for the formation of these habits. As in other subjects, good citizen- 
ship may be fostered through situations that arise in physical and health 
education. The social qualities which may there be developed include 
leadership, co-operation, loyalty, courage, sportsmanship, and honesty. They 
are also encouraged in our proposed programme of cadet training for boys 
and the equivalent programme for girls. In this connection we should have 
liked to discuss national service, on which we have received recommenda- 
tions, and on which we have very definite views; but this is a matter of 



national defence and national concern and is therefore not within our terms 
of reference as a provincial Commission. 

Contribution of Other Phases of the School Programme^ 

163. Pupils in the elementary school may develop proficiency in the art 
of democratic citizensliip through direct practice in assuming simple respon- 
sibilities in the school, by participating in clubs that have an easily under- 
stood organization, and through taking part in supervised sports and organ- 
ized out-of-school activities, such as Cubs and Brownies. In the new 
secondary schools, social skills may be fostered through participation in 
school sports and other co-curricular activities, in cadet training, and in 
out-of-school organizations such as Boy Scouts and Girl Guides. Much 
practical knowledge and experience may be gained also through student 
clubs and student government. In the final two years of secondary school 
and in junior college, student groups should be given greater freedom in 
planning and executing particular school functions and should have real 
responsibility for the way in which these are carried out. 

Hours of Study 

School Terms and Holidays 

164. The division of the school year into terms, the dates for opening 
and closing school, and school holidays, are specified in the various school 
Acts. The following excerpt from The Public Schools Act is typical: 

6.— (1) The school year shall consist of two terms, the first of which shall begin 
on the first Tuesday of September following Labour Day and shall end on the 
22nd day of December, and the second of which shall begin on the 3rd day of 
January and end on the 29th day of June. R.S.O. 1937, c.357, s.6(l); 1938 c.35, 

(2) When the 3rd day of January is a Friday, the schools shall not be opened 
until the following Monday, and when the 29th day of June or the 22nd day of 
December is a Monday, the schools shall be closed on the preceding Friday. 
R.S.O. 1937, c.357, s.6(2); 1938, c.35, s.28(2). 

(3) Every Saturday, every public holiday, the 24th day of May, the 11th 
day of November, the day appointed annually to be celebrated officially as the 
birthday of the reigning sovereign, the week following Easter Day, and every day 
proclaimed a holiday by the authorities of the municipality in which the teacher 
is engaged and every day upon which a school is closed under the provisions of 
The Public Health Act or the regulations of the Department, shall be a school 
hohday. 1944, c.56, s.9. 

(4) With the approval of the inspector, the board of a rural school section 
may substitute holidays in some other part of the year for part of the time herein 
allowed for Easter and midsummer vacations to suit the convenience of pupils 
and teachers, provided always that the same nimiber of holidays be allowed in 
each year. 

(5) When there is no county organization the inspector, subject to an appeal 
to the Minister, may determine the length of time, which shall not be less than 

^See also page 141. 


six months, during which a school shall be kept open each year, and it shall be 
the dut)' of the board to keep the school open during the whole of the time so 
determined. R.S.O. 1937, c.357, s.6(4-5). 

165. The present provisions appear to us to be satisfactory, and accord- 
ingly we recommend 

that the present statutory requirements in regard to school terms, the 
dates for opening and closing school, and school holidays, he continued 
and he specified in the proposed Education Act. 

Interruptions of the School Programme 

166. We have noted that an increasing number of requests are sub- 
mitted each year by outside agencies for assistance in projects which in- 
volve an interruption of the regular school programme for some or all 
students. Undoubtedly, many such requests had their origin during war 
years. But, while recognizing the worthy aims of such agencies, the advan- 
tages to students of the incidental training provided, and the importance 
of the assistance of students in a national emergency, we can see no justi- 
fication for such interruptions of the school programme in normal times. 
Particularly in view of the condensed and intensified courses which are 
contemplated and of the specialization in junior college, we are of opinion 
that all available time should be devoted to school work. Accordingly we 

that, except in the event of a national emergency, the full school day 
be devoted to the activities of the regular school programme. 

167. There is another practice which should not be condoned by the 
Department of Education. In the present secondary schools, students in 
lower forms are allowed, each year, to discontinue attendance at classes 
before the end of the second term while senior students are writing final 
examinations. For many students the result is a shortening of the school 
year by several weeks. This is an action which, whatever the circumstances, 
must be deplored. Accordingly we recommend 

that the dates for opening and closing school as specified in the Acts 
apply to all students, and that administrative provisions be made to 
permit attendance for the full period. 

Daili) Sessions 

168. The number of hours for each daily school session is specified in 
the regulations; for example, for high schools and collegiate institutes^ it 
is specified: 

8— ( 1 ) Pupils shall assemble for study each school-day at 9 a.m. and be dismissed 
not later than 4 p.m. 

(2) The board may authorize morning, noon and afternoon recesses but the 
number of school hours shall be not less than 5 hours a day including morning 
and afternoon recesses. 

'O. Reg. 252/48. 


For the new elementary schools the present provision^ requiring "5 hours 
of study a day including the recesses in the morning and afternoon" should 
be adequate. In the new secondary schools and junior colleges, however, 
where the school programme will be intensified, there would appear to be 
justification for lengthening the school day. But we are not unmindful of 
the additional burden imposed upon students in the form of homework. At 
present, except in elementary schools,- the amount of extra work so assigned 
to students is left to the discretion of the teacher, subject to review by 
the principal of the school. Cases are not unknown where too heavy a 
burden of homework has been placed upon conscientious students. If the 
length of the school day is increased, there should be provision in the time- 
table for study periods and a consequent decrease in the amount of home- 

169. We recommend 

(a) that the mimher of school hours for each daily session continue to 
be specified in the regulations; 

(b) that the present regulations, O. Reg. 95/47, 21 (1), (2), (3), be 
continued for the new elementary schools; 

(c) that the number of hours for each daily session be increased to five 
and one-half in the new secondary schools and to six in junior 

(d) ( i ) that, as a general practice, no hometuork be assigned to pupils 

in the new elementary schools; 
(ii) that constant care be exercised to ensure that the amount of 
homework assigned to students in secondary schools and junior 
colleges is not excessive; 
(iii) that the principal of a school be required to exercise control 
over the amount of homework assigned by members of his staff; 
and that provision be made by the principal of a secondary 
school or junior college for daily study periods for students, 
within school hours, under the supervision of members of the 
teaching staff of the school. 

Use of the English Language in Instruction and 
Communication in Publicly Supported Schools^ 

170. Generallv speaking, in the elementary schools of the province 
English is the only language used in instruction and communication. In 
certain public and separate schools, however, French may be introduced 
"as a subject of instruction with the approval of the Minister of Education." 
The Public Schools Act makes it clear that, except under specified conditions, 

^O. Reg. 95/47,21(3). 
'O.Reg. 95/47, 8(5). 

Tor a discussion of French as a subject of study and language of instruction and 
communication in public and separate schools, see Chapters XVI and XVII. 


English is to be tlie language of instruction and communication in all public 
school classrooms. The relevant section is 103 (b) which states: 

It shall be the duty of every teacher,— 

{b) to use the English language in instruction and in all communications with 
the pupils in regard to discipline and the management of the school, except 
where it is impracticable to do so by reason of the pupil not understanding 
English, but recitations requiring the use of a text-book may be conducted 
in the language of the text-book; 

No such provision is included in The Separate Schools Act or in regulations 
made thereunder. 

171. Nor is there any reference in Acts or regulations of the Department 
of Education regarding the language of instruction and communication for 
high schools, collegiate institutes, continuation schools, and vocational 
schools. Presumably it is assumed that English is to be the language of 
instruction and communication in these schools, except during the classroom 
periods when languages other than English are being taught as subjects 
of the regular programme. This, at any rate, is the practice. 

172. That the Ontario Legislature has the power to regulate the language 
to be used in instruction and communication in publicly supported schools 
has been determined by the Privy Council. In the case of Mackell vs. Ottawa 
Separate School Trustees, 1917, Appeal Cases, page 62 et seq., their Lord- 
ships stated: 

The schools must be conducted in accordance with the regulations, and their 
Lordships can find nothing in the Statute to take away from the authority that 
had power to issue regulations the power of directing in what language education 
is to be given. 

173. In our opinion, policy with respect to the use of the English 
language in instruction and communication in publicly supported schools 
of the province should be established by the Legislative Assembly, and 
appropriate sections should be incorporated in the statutes. We therefore 

that provision he made in the Acts of the Department of Education tcith 
respect to the use of English as the language of instruction and com- 
munication in all publicly supported schools. 

174. As a general requirement governing the language to be used in all 
elementar)' schools, public and separate, we recommend 

that, in public and separate elementary schools, English be the language 
used in instruction and in communication with pupils in regard to 
discipline and the management of the school, except where it is im- 
practicable to do so by reason of the pupil not understanding English, 
or where, in accordance with the rcgulatio7is, French may he used} 
'See Chapter XVII. 


175. Upon entering secondary school, children will have attained a 
suflBcient mastery of the English language to make possible the use of 
English in all instruction and communication. Where instruction in languages 
other than English is given, the language being taught may be used as 
a medium of instruction during the class periods concerned. Accordingly 
we recommend 

that in publicly supported post-elementary schools— secondary schools, 
junior colleges, and other institutions at the level of further education^ 
—English be the sole language of instruction and of communication with 
pupils in regard to the discipline and m,anagement of the school, except 
that instruction in languages other than English may be conducted in 
the language being taught during the class periods concerned. 

176. Special regulations should be drafted to govern the use of English 
in correspondence courses under the jurisdiction of the Department of 
Education. We recommend 

that, in correspondence courses conducted by the Department of Edu- 
cation, English be the language of instruction and communication with 
pupils, except where it is impracticable to do so by reason of the pupil 
not understanding English, or where, in accordance with the regulations, 
French may be used? 

HVith the exception of the programme for training teachers for elementar>' schools 
in which French is a subject of study and language of instruction and communication. 
See Chapter X\ II. 

-See Chapter XVII. 





1. Much has been written about the centralization and decentraHzation 
of educational administration. Although at first sight it may seem that the 
subject is academic in nature, and that little time should be devoted to it, 
we have found that it is of fundamental importance in relation to recom- 
mendations on the educational system of Ontario. 

2. National systems of education may be classified as centraHzed or 
decentralized. There are, however, two quite distinct concepts regarding 
centralization and decentralization. One takes into account only whether 
responsibility for education rests with the people of the nation as a whole 
or with the people of the states, provinces, or other subdivisions of the 
nation. According to this classification, France, New Zealand, and the 
Scandinavian countries have centralized educational systems because the 
legislative authority in educational matters is national rather than pro- 
vincial. The other concept takes into account only the method by which 
education is administered; it is not concerned with which government has 
responsibility for education but with whether, and how, the government 
which does have the responsibility delegates its administrative powers to 
subordinate authorities. According to the first classification, Canada has a 
decentralized educational system; responsibility for education was assigned 
to the provinces by the British North America Act. But this leaves the 
question of the extent of centralization within each province; and with 
reference to Ontario, it is this question which we discuss in the paragraphs 

3. Under a system of complete centralization of educational adminis- 
tration, the government responsible would provide school buildings; it 
would train, certificate, appoint, and pay teachers, supervisors, and other 
educational personnel; it would determine curricula and all matters of 
school administration; and it would pay the full cost of education. The 
entire educational system under such a plan would be operated by a staflF 
of professional educators responsible to the government, and laymen would 
exercise control only through the Legislature. Under a system of complete 



decentralization, on the other hand, the central authority would have no 
jurisdiction over educational matters. Education would be a responsibihty 
of local municipalities or of parents, without financial aid or guidance from 
the central authority, and the role of the educational expert would be 
greatly limited. There is probably no educational system which can prop- 
erly be described as completely centralized or completely decentralized. 
It is common practice, however, to classify an educational system as 
decentralized where control over an appreciable number of those items 
usually classed as interna^ is in the hands of local authorities, and to classify 
as centialized a system in which contiol over few, if any, of such items 
is delegated to other than central authorities. 

4. In any countiy the system of educational administiation is usually 
similar to the general system of government.^ Indeed, different systems of 
government seem to require different systems of educational administra- 
tion. A completely centralized educational administration is necessary to 
achieve totalitarian aims and ideals, whereas the preservation of democratic 
principles requires a decentralized system. 

5. Germany and Russia, which traditionally had decentralized systems 
of government, found it necessary under totalitarian regimes to centralize 
all types of administration under the control of the cential authority. In 
Nazi Germany all educational oflBcials formed a pyramid, with the Minister 
of Education as the apex. No person or agency outside this hierarchical 
pyramid was permitted to influence the theory or practice of education. 
Local education authorities were replaced bv local education committees, 
but these were merely consultative bodies completely subservient to the 
government (Party) representative at every level. In the Soviet Union, 
while in theory the educational system continues to be decentraHzed, 
recently there has been evidence of increasing centrahzed control, in this 
case through the Party rather than through civil administrative organiza- 
tions. This same centralizing tendency is appearing in Eastern European 
countries such as Czechoslovakia, Bulgaria, and Hungary, which have come 
under totalitarian control. 

6. Influences other than tradition or politics have operated in some 
relatively "new" democratic countries. In those with sparse population and 
great distances, such as Australia, New Zealand, and the Union of South 
Africa, it was often necessary for the State to inaugurate the educational 
system. The tendency has been to continue state contiol, although in 
Australia and New Zealand there has been a realization of the danger to 
democracy of a too highly centralized system and considerable decential- 
ization has been recommended. In the states of the United States and the 

^See below, paragraph 9. 

2See N. Hans, "Comparative Study of European Education", in Year Book of 
Education, 1936. 


provinces of Canada, however, although in most instances the educational 
system was initiated by the central authority, there was, during the latter 
part of the eighteenth and the first half of the nineteenth centuries, a 
marked trend toward decentralization. In the United States a tendency in 
the opposite direction began about 1850; it was encouraged by difficulties 
which arose from the smallness of local units of administration and from 
the gro\ving numbers and complexity of the duties of the local boards. 
Leading educationists in the United States feel that this trend must be 
reversed. In any case, the administration of education is still, in most of 
the individual states, highly decentralized. 

7. \Vriters such as Sir Fred Clarke, Sir Percy Nunn, Professor Hocking 
of Harvard, and Professor Kandel of Columbia have enunciated a philo- 
sophical basis for the highly decentralized systems of educational adminis- 
tration in Great Britain and the United States. The aim of education in 
a democracy, they say, must be two-fold: firstly, to produce the type of 
citizen found desirable by the society concerned; and secondly, to provide 
for growth beyond the type, this being the only way in which a democratic 
society can grow. The totalitarian theory of education is based on the first 
of these aims only, considering growth beyond the type as a monstrosity 
to be liquidated. As a result of their appraisal of the educational situation, 
the English have confirmed and strengthened, through the Education Act 
of 1944, a system whereby local authorities are given major control of the 
administration of education. 

Centralization and Decentralization in Ontario 

8. Ontario does not have a decentralized educational administration in 
the same sense as have England and most of the states of the United 
States. On the other hand, it does not have complete centralization of 
administration such as is found in Australia. In our province certain aspects 
of educational administration are completely centralized and others highly 

9. It is customary to classify various aspects of education into two 
categories, externa and interna. The former include those which "make it 
possible to bring the right pupil to the right school under the right 
teacher'V which, in short, ensure that equity of opportunity which demo- 
cratic systems of education seek to provide. These aspects include: com- 
pulsory attendance; length of school year; character of buildings and 
play-grounds from the educational and hygienic standpoints; medical 
inspection and health; size of classes; qualifications, training, salaries, and 
pensions of teachers; provision of a co-ordinated system of schools;^ and 

ij. L. Kandel, Comparative Education, Cambridge, Mass.: Houghton Mifflin, 1933, 
p. 214. 

2For Ontario this means a system of schools under the jiuisdiction of the Depart- 
ment of Education whereby a pupil is enabled to advance within the publicly supported 
system of education by successive stages to his ultimate educational goal, without 
hindrance from artificial administrative barriers. 

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financing of the school programme. Those classed as interna include: 
curricula; courses of study; methods of instruction; textbooks; standards; 
and evaluation of pupil progress. 

10. A diagrammatical representation of the existing situation in Ontario 
with respect to control of interna and externa is given in Figure 1. No 
attempt has been made to indicate exact percentages since measurement 
of shared control is impossible. In general, as shown in the diagram, the 
central authority has the major control of four of the five items classed as 
interna. In the field of standards and examinations a trend toward decen- 
tralization has been evident during recent years. At present, the only 
examination controlled by the central authority is that leading to secondary 
school honour graduation, which, however, still has a disproportionate 
influence over other school examinations and standards. With regard to 
methods of instruction, courses of study, and textbooks, teachers exercise 
some control through selection of topics from the courses of study pre- 
scribed by the central authority, tlirough selection of books from approved 
hsts, and through limited freedom to employ their own methods of instruc- 
tion. In all these instances, however, ultimate control is vested in the 
central authority. Such control of interna as is possessed by local education 
authorities is exercised largely through their appointment of teachers and, 
in cities, of local inspectors of schools. 

11. The central authority has major control also in those fields classed 
as externa. The training and certification of teachers are entirely under its 
control. It determines the length of the school vear, school term, and 
school day, except in a few isolated cases where, owing to geographical 
and climatic conditions, local authorities are permitted to vary the opening 
and closing dates of the school year and school term. Determination of the 
limits of the period of compulsory attendance and responsibihty for 
establishing a co-ordinated system of schools rest entirely with the 
central authority. 

12. However, there are important aspects of educational administration 
for which the local authority is largely responsible. Within limits prescribed 
by regulation, the size of classes is determined by the local autliority. 
The extent of medical inspection and of health measures is determined 
by the local education authority with the co-operation of the municipality 
and the local board of health. The enforcement of compulsory attendance 
legislation is almost entirely a function of local authorities. The fixing of 
salaries and salary scales is a matter for the local authority; the central 
authority does not specify even a minimum salary for teachers. Local 
authorities have primary responsibility for the character of buildings and 
playgrounds but they risk forfeiting provincial grants if they refuse to 
maintain standards set by the central authority. And responsibility for 
financing the educational programme rests with local authorities although 



financial assistance is provided by the central authority through legislative 

13. The Ontario educational system is much more centralized than is 
commonly supposed, especially in view of the fact that even in those 
matters over which the local authorities have control their authority must, 
in many instances, be exercised within limits set by legislation or regula- 
tions of the central authority. The power of local education authorities 
to appoint and pay teachers and to finance the erection of school buildings 
gives the impression that they have more control over education than they 
actually possess. It is often forgotten that, although appointed by the local 
authority, a teacher must be trained and certificated by the Department 
of Education, and must teach prescribed subjects from an approved hst of 
books by methods subject to the approval of the inspector. Moreover, his 
pupils must write departmental examinations if they are to secure the 
Secondary School Honour Graduation Diploma. Centralization has, in fact, 
increased with the passing of time. 

Development Toward the Centralization of 
Educational Administration in Ontario 

14. The educational system in Ontario was initiated by the Legislature, 
an origin indicative of a centralized system, but the estabhshment of a 
school in any particular area was the result of local action. The demands 
of the people for schools were usually far in advance of legislation. Al- 
though the first elementary and secondary schools were established as a 
result of legislative action, there was no central control over them. From 
1808 until 1823 the only evidence of centralized control was the fact that 
the district public school boards were appointed by the Governor. Each of 
these boards was a law unto itself; it could hire as a teacher whatever 
person it desired; and it could follow whatever course of studies it wished. 
It was not long, however, before a tendency toward centralization appeared. 
In 1823 a General Board of Education was appointed by the Governor, on 
the authority of the Government of Great Britain, and the district public 
schools^ and the district common schools were placed under its jurisdiction. 
Even at this early date, one of the earmarks of the centralized system 
made its appearance: the promotion of uniformity throughout the schools 
was one of the specific duties imposed on the General Board of Educa- 
tion. Recommendation of textbooks by the central authority made its first 
appearance at this time. 

15. The General Board of Education was abolished in 1833 and its 
functions were transferred nominally to the Council of King's College. 
Following this, another period of autonomy ensued for both the district 
public schools and the common schools. The deadlock between the Legis- 

^"Grammar" schools. 


lative Council and the Assembly, which was the prelude to the Rebellion 
of 1837, resulted in a period of stagnation in educational matters. This can 
be seen in the report submitted by the Commission appointed to enquire 
into the state of education in Upper Canada in 1839. 

16. When educational legislation was introduced in 1841,^ it showed 
the effects of the Rebellion of 1837 and of the union of Upper and Lower 
Canada. It provided for the appointment of a Superintendent of Educa- 
tion for the United Province of Canada, and assigned duties to him which 
had the effect of strengthening the control of the central authority. These 
were briefly: 

(1) To apportion the legislative grant among the several municipal dis- 
tricts and to certify the same to the Receiver General of the province 
and to the treasurer of each of the districts. 

(2) To pay annual visits to each of the municipal districts of the province. 

(3) To prescribe forms for carrying out the provisions of the Act. 

(4) To make suggestions tending to the estabhshment of uniformity 
throughout the common schools of the province. 

(5) To submit an annual report on the condition of common schools and 
plans for their improvement. 

17. Under the Act of 1841, the General Board of Education disappeared 
and the control over interna of education was even more highly decentral- 
ized than before. The right to choose texts and to decide on courses of 
study was delegated to elected township school commissioners, as was the 
right to determine the qualifications of teachers. The only indication of a 
tendency toward centralization was a provision requiring the Superinten- 
dent to make suggestions for the establishment of uniformity throughout 
the common schools of the province. 

18. But the Act proved to be unworkable, owing to racial and religious 
differences; and, as part of a general move to legislate separately for 
education in the eastern and western sections of the new province, the 
oflBce of Superintendent was abolished in 1843. The school Act of 1843- 
transferred to the Provincial Secretary the duties formerly assigned to the 
Superintendent. An assistant superintendent was appointed for each of the 
two sections of the province. This was the first time in the history of the 
province that a Minister of the Crown was charged with the direction of 
educational affairs. It showed that the concept of education as a respon- 
sibility of the state was beginning to be accepted. This was a step on the 
path toward centralization. 

19. The real beginning of our relatively highly centralized system of 
today dates from the Act of 1846.^ The Act gave extensive powers to a 

M & 5 Vict., Ch. 18, S.P.C, 1841. 
=7 Vict, Ch. 19, Sec. 1, S.P.C. 
•■•9 Vict., Ch. 20, S.P.C. 


General Board of Education and a new Superintendent of Schools, which 
were in marked contrast with those formerly possessed by the central 
authority. This was in accordance with the views of Egerton Ryerson, who 
was the chief architect of the Act. His chief argument for the change from 
decentralization to centralization was that it was necessary if the principles 
of responsible government were to be applied to the administration of 
education. The following excerpt gives the essence of his argument: 

In order that a system of instruction may be Provincial . . . the various parts 
of it must be made to move in harmony . . . and the whole must be subject to one 
common direction. This cannot be the case where the different parts are wholly 
independent of each other — where the County and Township Superintendents, 
and each Corporation of Trustees, are as independent of the Crown in Canada as 
they are of that in China ... As there is one responsibility, so there must be one 
authority — one mode of appointing to, and removing, from the head of every 
Department of authority, whether supreme or subordinate — in all localities and 
gradations of office. This principle of Responsible Government is contravened by 
the Common School Act of 1843, in the whole system of local superintendency.* 

20. Ryerson realized, however, that the change from almost complete 
local to central control could not be made in one step: 

It would doubtless be more simple and consonant to om- system of Govern- 
ment if the District Superintendents were appointed in the same manner [i.e. by 
the centi-al authority] as all other administrators of the law; but, as a completely 
opposite system has obtained, so great a change might cause dissatisfaction.^ 

He was content to work gradually, and the Acts of 1846, 1850, 1853, 1871, 
1874, and 1876 represent successive stages in the fulfilment of his aims. 

21. In the Act of 1850,^ commonly regarded as the keystone of Ontario's 
educational system, provision was made for a newly constituted Council 
of Public Instruction to replace the General Board of Education. Author- 
ities were set up, intermediate between the local school trustees and the 
Council, known as county boards of public instruction; each of these was 
composed of grammar school trustees and the county superintendent. They 
were given some of the powers former! v held by the local and district 
superintendents, such as the certification of teachers and the selection of 
textbooks from lists approved by the Council of Public Instruction. 

22. Superficially, it might appear that the formation of county boards 
represented a partial return to decentralization. Actually, the opposite is 
true. Formerly, the district superintendent, who had performed many of 
the functions assigned to the new county board, was wholly a local ap- 
pointee. Under the new Act ail but one of the board's members were 

^J. G. Hodgins, Historical and Other Papers and Documents Illustrative of the 
Educational System of Ontario, Vol. Ill, 1853-1868, Toronto: King's Printer, 1911, 
pp. 162-163. 

^Ibid., p. 164. 

ns & 14 Vict., Ch. 48, S.P.C. 


appointed by the central authority. Moreover, with the development of 
professional training the power of local authorities to certificate untrained 
teachers became less important. At the same time the Council of Public 
Instruction narrowed down the list from which selections of textbooks could 
be made. Thus, when, in 1853, grammar school trustees ceased to be ap- 
pointed by the Governor and became appointees of county councils, no 
real diminution of the power of the central authority was made. 

23. The Grammar School Act of 1853^ marked another step in the co- 
ordination of all types of publicly supported education under the central 
authority. Altliough previously grammar school trustees had been appointed 
by the Governor, they had been practically autonomous. The Act of 1853 
provided for trustees appointed by local municipal authorities but brought 
the grammar schools into the school system and under the control of the 
Chief Superintendent. The next step in the centralization of the system 
came ^vith the Act of 1871^ which, among other things, provided for the 
appointment of county "inspectors" instead of superintendents. These of- 
ficers were still appointed by the county councils, but, since they now had 
to meet qualifications specified by the central authority, they were brought 
under closer central control. 

24. In 1874, the Council of Public Instruction acquired the power to 
prescribe courses of study and to appoint secondary school inspectors. At 
the same time the nature of the central authority was changed; the number 
of members in the Council was increased from 9 to 18, some of whom were 
elected. But the attempt to give other than government appointees a direct 
voice in the control of education was short-lived. It was opposed by Ryerson 
for personal reasons as well as reasons of principle. He urged the appoint- 
ment of a Minister of Public Instruction and suggested that the work of the 
Council of Public Instruction could easily be performed by the executive 
council on the report of one of its members. This recommendation of 
Ryerson's was acted upon in 1876,^ when the Executive Council became 
the Department of Education with a Minister of Education in charge. 

25. The last step in the development of centralization was taken in 
1930 with the removal from county councils of the right to appoint elemen- 
tary school inspectors and the vesting of this power in the Department of 
Education. Since that time there have been but two changes affecting 
centralization, one indicating a decrease and the other an increase in central 
control. The former was the withdrawal of the central authority from the 
examination field, except at the senior matriculation level. The latter was 
the assumption by the central authority of approximately 50 per cent of 
the gross approved cost of education. 

116 Vict, Ch. 186, S.P.C. 
234 Vict, Ch. 33, S.O. 
339 Vict., Ch. 16, S.O. 


Decentralization and Centralization Under Other Jurisdictions 

26. Certain developments in countries which have forms of government 
similar to our own should be briefly examined in order to obtain a clearer 
picture of the problems with which we are faced, and to understand the 
methods by which others have sought to solve them. In seeking to deter- 
mine our o\\ni policy, we should realize that the problem has two related 
parts. Firstly, which particular items are to be under the direct control 
of the central authority and which are to be under the control of local 
authorities? Secondly, in view of the nature of the items to be placed under 
local control, what is the most suitable and eflFective type of local authority? 
To these and other questions we must seek answers through a study of 
the educational systems of Great Britain, Australia, the United States, and 
other provinces of Canada. 

England and Wales 

27. Although it is generally considered that England has a most judicious 
division of educational powers and duties between the central and local 
education authorities, her administrative organization is not the result of 
any carefully formulated plan. It is rather the outgrowth of more than a 
century of piecemeal legislation resulting from numerous Royal Commis- 
sions and other studies of current educational problems. Such legislation 
has represented, in almost every instance, a compromise between the ex- 
treme views of those who favoured complete denominational control of 
schools, assisted by rate (tax) aid, and those who favoured a completely 
secular system of national schools. 

28. Up to 1833, the administration of education in England was com- 
pletely decentralized; there was no relationship between education and 
government. Throughout the first three decades of the nineteenth century, 
however, proponents of a national system of education were active. Whit- 
bread, Brougham, and Roebuck^ aU presented Bills in Parliament which 
would have provided for national systems of education supported by the 
rates and by government grants as well as by fees. Roebuck maintained that 
each child in Great Britain from age 6 to age 12 should be a regular 
attendant at school. His Bill aroused keen debate in the House, and the 
Government showed in 1833 that it was not altogether indifferent to the 
subject hx voting the sum of £40,000 to be used by the two large voluntary 
school-providing agencies^ for the erection of school-houses. This marked 
the first participation of government, central or local, in public education 
in England. Administration, however, was still completely in the hands of 

^Samuel Whitbread, Parochial Schools Bill, 1807; Henry Brougham, Parish Schools 
Bill, 1820; Arthur Roebuck, 1833. 

^The British and Foreign School Society and the National Society for Promotion of 
the Education of the Poor in the Principles of the Established Church throughout 
England and Wales. 


voluntary agencies. The grant was renewed in each succeeding year, and 
the amount was gradually increased. By 1839, it was felt necessary to estab- 
lish some central authority to supervise the disbursement of this public 
money, and a Committee of the Privy Council was formed for this purpose. 

29. Throughout the next 40 years there were continued demands for rate 
aid to elementary schools; but the fact that nearly all schools were denomi- 
national made the problem difficult. Throughout this period there were 
no local authorities for educational purposes. Thus the practice grew of 
having a body of managers or governors in charge of each school. The 
selection of teachers and the curriculum, as well as details of management 
and finance, were left to these governing bodies, subject, in the case of 
schools operated by the large educational societies, to the general super- 
vision of the society concerned. 

30. Between 1833 and 1862, government grants were based on the con- 
taibution of the voluntary agency maintaining the school, but in the 
latter year the Revised Code introduced the so-called "payment-by-results" 
system whereby capitation grants were provided on the basis of examina- 
tions conducted by His Majesty's Inspectors. This resulted in a deterioration 
in the quality of education oflFered in the schools. It encouraged* falsifica- 
tion of registers and the learning by rote of passages on which examinations 
were set. Furthermore, since grants to teachers in training had been vdth- 
drawn in 1862, the number of poorly qualified teachers increased. These 
factors so aggravated the situation that some change was imperative. Even 
confirmed individualists like J. S. MilP publicly expressed their agreement 
with the necessity for an adequate system of public education. 

31. The result was the Education Act of 1870, which inaugurated a 
system of school boards whose duty it was to make provision for elementary 
education where the facilities arranged by voluntary agencies were insuffi- 
cient to meet the need. The state control over these boards was not much 
greater than that exercised over the agencies operating voluntary schools. 
The central authority confined itself to inspection for the purpose of deter- 
mining whether regulations were being followed and to secure a basis for 
determining what grants should be paid. There was no suggestion that 
curricula and courses of study should be a concern of the central authority; 
but, indirectly, the "payment-by-results" system with its state-administered 
examinations had a stultifying efiFect upon the system of education. These 
board schools were for the most part confined to elementary education; 
secondary education, as provided in grammar schools and private schools, 
was still completely decentralized. 

i"Is it not almost a self-evident maxim that the State should require and compel 
the education up to a certain standard of every human being who is born its citizen?," 
J. S. Mill in On Liberty, Chapter V, p. 157 (Routledge edn.). Quoted by H. C. Barnard 
in A Short History of English Education, 1760-1944, London: University of London 
Press, 1947, p. 133. 


32. The increased interest in scientific and technical education during 
tlie last decades of the nineteenth century led to a popular demand for 
technical and other ad\anced tj^es of secondary schools, to be operated 
at public expense. Since the schools operated by the school boards could 
not undertake this additional work, secondary schools were placed under 
the direct administration of county and county borough councils, which had 
been authorized in 1886. This was a new procedure. It meant giving control 
of educational matters to local government bodies as opposed to ad hoc^ 
school boards, such as those administering elementary education. 

33. During this period it became increasingly evident that the school 
boards were not able to carry out all the duties which had been assigned 
to them. Something had to be done: either education would have to be 
more highly centralized under the Board of Education; or authorities with 
greater jurisdiction and resources would have to be formed. The latter 
solution was adopted in the Bryce Commission and in the Education Act 
of 1902. This Act brought a measure of order into the administrative chaos 
which had prevailed in English education during the previous century. 

34. The Education Act of 1902 represented a centralizing trend, but 
only to the extent that it greatly increased the size of the unit of adminis- 
tration. Administration of the interna of education continued to be highly 
decentralized. The result was actually greater local autonomy since the 
new authorities could efficiently discharge the responsibilities which were 
assigned to them. Curricula, courses of study, textbooks, supervision, ex- 
aminations, and even in many cases the training of teachers were made 
responsibilities of the local authorities. Decentralization went even further 
than this. Since the local authorities, in most cases, did not concern them- 
selves with curricula and textbooks, responsibility for such matters devolved 
on the headmasters and teachers of the individual schools, usually in col- 
laboration with the bodies of managers or bodies of <Tovernors.- 

35. The organization effected by the Act of 1902 underwent no major 
change for a period of 42 years. Throughout this period, however, it became 
increasingly apparent that improvements could be made. The existence of 
two distinct authorities" operating in one community was particularlv 
criticized. It was also felt that most, if not all, of the Part III authorities 
were too small to be charged with administrative functions. The point of 
view of those favouring larger authorities is well expressed in the following 
quotation from an article by Mr. E. Salter Davies:'* 

^Ad hoc school boards are boards established for the administration of education only. 

^See below, paragraph 38. 

^These were: Part III authorities, administering elementary education only; and 
Part II authorities, administering elementary and secondary education. 

*"The Administration of PubHc Education in England," in Modern Trends in 
Education, A. E. Campbell, editor, Proceedings of the New Education Fellowship 
Conference held in New Zealand, July, 1937, WeUington: Whitcomb and Tombs 1938 
pp. 77-78. 


Unless the smaller units of local government are replaced by larger units, it would 
appear to be inevitable that many of the functions now performed by local bodies 
will be absorbed by the central government. The enlargement of the areas of local 
government does not involve the extinction of the interest of the smaller towns 
and the villages. Such a result would be as unnecessary as it would be deplorable. 
Experience shows conclusively that satisfactory results in the sphere of local 
government can be obtained only where there is sufficient centralization to ensure 
a reasonable amount of uniformity and elimination of waste, and sufficient devo- 
lution to smaller local bodies to stimulate and maintain the interests of those 
removed from the seat of government. The supreme problem of local government 
is to achieve the golden mean between over-centi-alization and excessive decentral- 
ization. The former may lead to a soulless uniformity and to a lack of interest on 
the part of those most affected, while the latter, at its worst, leads to chaos. 

36. Great shifts in population during the Second World War so aggra- 
vated the situation that the Education Act of 1944 abolished all existing 
Part III authorities and placed the three phases of education-primary, 
secondary, and further— in the hands of the councils of the counties and 
county boroughs. Thus, the Ministry of Education for England now^ deals 
with only 146 education authorities for a school population of between five 
and six million. 

37. Although this reduction in the number of local education authorities 
represents a centralizing trend, it is not true that all local administration 
of education in England devolves on these 146 councils. As a matter of 
fact, in matters concerned with the interna of education the Act of 1944 
provides for an even greater decentralization of many of the powers of 
local education authorities. The Act requires each local education authority 
to make schemes of divisional administration. Under such schemes each 
county is to be divided into a number of executive divisions, composed of 
boroughs and o£ urban and rural districts, either singly or in groups. The 
council is empowered to delegate to the divisional executives any of its 
powers relating to primary or secondary education, with the exception of 
matters concerned with raising rates and borrowing money. Thus, urban 
districts and boroughs which previously were Part III authorities continue 
to have a good deal to say in relation to the programmes and teachers in 
the schools in their communities. At the same time the rural districts as 
well as urban districts and boroughs which were not formerly Part III 
authorities are given powers in these matters which previously they did not 

38. The divisional executives represent the local education authority in 
dealings with the immediate administrators of individual schools, namely, 
the managers of primary schools and the governors of secondary schools. 
This practice is indicative of the extent of decentralization in England: 
each school or small group of schools is required to have a body of gover- 
nors or managers, in conformity with the idea that "Every school of what- 
ever type or category must have an individual life of its own as well as a 


place in the local system."^ The managers or governors are administrators 
of schools, not of administrative miits. They have no powers over expendi- 
ture, but diey select the head teachers although the local education authority 
legally appoints them. The powers of managers and governors vary and 
are laid down by the local education authority in rules of management or 
articles of government. These usually distinguish between the powers and 
duties of the headmaster or headmistress, the body of managers or gover- 
nors, and the local education authority or its representative. 

39. In England the head teacher has more real authority than has his 
counterpart on this continent. The curriculum and the selection of assistant 
teachers are decided upon jointly by the head teacher and the managing 
or governing body. 

40. It can thus be seen that the Act of 1944 represents both centralizing 
and decentralizing trends. The former are evident in the removal from the 
borough and urban district councils of direct power to raise a rate or borrow 
money and in the increased control of local education authorities over 
certain t^'pes of voluntary schools. The latter appear in the permission 
granted to local education authorities to delegate powers to rural district 
councils and in some cases to parish councils, both of which previously 
had no control over education; and in the extension to the primary field 
of the provision requiring boards of governors or managers for each school 
or group of schools. The general picture shows that in England the trend 
is toward centralization of what we have termed the externa, and toward 
continued and even extended decentralization of those items which we have 
termed the interna of education. 


41. We have aheady indicated that in the states of the Commonwealth 
of Australia education is highly centralized. Both interna and externa are 
completely controlled by the central authority and enforced through a 
rigid system of state inspection. 

42. The Australian situation can be used to exemplify the following 
advantages and disadvantages of a centralized system of education: 

(a) Advantages of a Centralized System 

(1) The system may be operated more economically. Cramer^ found that 

in 1929 the cost per pupil in the State of Victoria was about 60 per 

cent of that for Oregon, an average American state. To some extent 

this was partly accounted for by larger classes, fewer Hbrary books and 

iWhite Paper on "Principles of Government in Maintained Secondary Schools", 1944, 
quoted in D. J. Beattie, B. S. Taylor, and E. T. Davis, The New Law of Education. 
London: Butterworth, 1944, p. 124. 

^John Francis Cramer, Australian Schools Through American Eyes, Educational 
Research Series No. 42, Melbourne: University of Melbourne Press, 1936. 


supplies, and poorer janitor service. But much was saved by elimination 
of duplication of services and by the provision of correspondence 
courses in place of the operation of smaller schools. 

(2) All districts are served equally. There are not the excellent buildings 
such as are found in parts of the United States and Canada, but neither 
are there the poor ones. As a rule, teachers in rural areas are as highly 
qualified as those in urban areas. Australia is justifiably proud of her 
system of rural schools. 

(3) Reforms can be put into effect rapidly and thoroughly. Administrators 
have to be quite certain of their ground as the effects are far-reaching, 
and probably this partly accounts for lack of experimentation and 
initiative. However, there have been signs of late that the systems are 
becoming more sensitive to pubUc needs. 

(4) A centralized system facilitates the establishment and operation of 
state-wide services such as medical and dental inspection. These are 
available to every child, and yet the aggregate cost is less than in a 
decentralized system. 

(b) Disadvantages of a Centralized System 

(1) Local interest is not encouraged. Since school affairs are the business 
of the state, there is no local participation and no healthy rivalry be- 
tween districts. Because education is a function of the central authority 
only, complacency may easily develop. 

(2) Centralized systems tend to be bureaucratic. Precedent and tradition 
hinder progress. Inbreeding may make the system autocratic and 
cautious, as may lock-step methods of promotion. On the other hand, 
a capable director can wield a great influence. 

(3) Close control over education by political parties has prevented long- 
range planning. The powers of ofiBcials are limited, since changes have 
to be enacted by law. 

(4) Teachers generally have no opportunity to show the initiative common 
on this continent and in England. Classification of teachers through 
inspection and external state examinations tends to prevent experi- 
mentation and adaptation of courses to local needs. 

The United States of America 

43. Responsibility for education in the United States of America, with 
reference to the jurisdiction of the federal government, is highly decentral- 
ized. In individual states, however, decentralization of educational adminis- 
tration is not as extensive as it is in England. On the average, the situation 
might be described as occupying approximately the middle ground between 
the highly decentralized English system and the highly centralized Austra- 
lian system. But, on the whole, there is greater decentralization in the 
United States than in Ontario. 



44. Conflicting tendencies have moulded the educational systems of the 
various states. The first of these arises from the desire of the pubHc to 
control its own aflairs. This tends to result in decentralization. The other, 
a more recent development, arises from the application of principles of 
eflBcient management and scientific contiol to the types of education which 
the public wishes to provide. This tends to result in centralization. 

45. In most American states complete decentrahzation of education, 
such as obtained in Great Britain previous to 1833, has never existed. 
Almost from the beginning the various state and territorial governments 
passed legislation relative to education. Most of this consisted of a delega- 
tion of state powers to smaller governmental units: at first to the school 
"district", which was usually the attendance area of a single school; and 
later to larger units, such as the New England town,^ the county, the 
towTiship, or several townships combined. Until the latter part of the 
nineteenth century and in some states until well into the present century, 
these local education authorities controlled to a large degree both the 
interna and externa of education. 

46. With the growing urbanization of America and the demand for 
education in excess of the three R's, there developed a tendency, in most 
states, toward centralization; and the trend still continues. The problem 
was well expressed by the National Advisory Committee on Education in 

The American people must face the problem of conflict between our traditional 
policy of state and local autonomy and this growing trend toward federal 
centralization ... It may well be that the apparent immediate educational elfici- 
encies which are the aim of centralized federal management of education, may 
be completely counter-balanced by other ultimate losses in social and political 
functioning. It is the conviction of this Committee that harm results when intimacy 
between schools and their pahons and neighbours is disturbed by remote control 
of a distant authority." 

The movement has, as its motive, administrative efiBciency rather than 
control over education in the interests of a sovereign state. 

47. Although most states prescribe a basic curriculum in terms of sub- 
jects which must be taught, such as the history of the Constitution of the 
United States and of the state concerned, conservation of Ufe and property, 
nationalism, and the three R's, most states leave the interna of education 
to local authorities. In many states this includes even the training of 
teachers. It includes also general supervision, and it is in this respect that 
American state systems differ most widely from those in the provinces of 
Canada, where supervision is almost universally a function of the central 
education authority. The centralization which has taken place in the various 

^The New England town is comparable to an Ontario township except that it 
includes all urban places within it. 

^National Advisory Committee on Education, Federal Relations to Education, Part I, 
pp. 12 et seq. 


states has, therefore, been largely in the field of externa, through the pro- 
vision of adequate physical accommodation and opportunity for all children 
to have access to a satisfactory type of education. The ideal situation has 
been expressed by Elwood P. Cubberly: 

It ought to be essentially the business of the State to formulate a constructive 
policy for the development of the education of the people of the State, and to 
change this policy from time to time as the changing needs of the State may seem 
to require . . . The formulaion of minimum standards for the various forms of 
public education, the raising of these standards from time to time, the protection 
of these standards from being lowered by private agencies, and the stimulation 
of communities to additional educational activity, is a fundamental right and duty 
of the State. On the other hand, to find what can safely be left to local initiative 
and control, and then to pass this down, ought to be as much a function of proper 
state school adminish-ation as is the removal from community control of matters 
which communities cannot longer handle with a reasonable degree of effectiveness. 
Unity in essentials and liberty in non-essentials, as high minimum standards for 
all as is possible, constant stimulation to communities to exceed the minima 
required, and large liberty to communities in the choice of methods and tools 
and in the extension of educational advantages and opportunities, ought to be 
cardinal principles in a State's educational policy and in its relation to its 
subordinate governmental units. ^ 

48. Generally speaking, the south-eastern states have a higher degree of 
centralization than have the north-eastern and western states. North Caro- 
lina is generally considered to have the most highly centralized system of 
education.^ There the entire cost of the minimum programme for a nine- 
month term is borne by the state; county school boards are appointed by 
the Legislature; the full cost of transportation is paid by the state; and the 
central authority prescribes the course of studies and textbooks to be used. 
County superintendents, while appointed by the county boards of edu- 
cation, work in close co-operation with the state Department of Education, 
since they must be certificated by that body and their salaries are paid by 
the state. On the other hand, the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania is an 
example of a highly decentralized system, with thousands of local authori- 
ties each selecting its own textbooks and deciding its own curricula. Super- 
vision is by officials appointed and paid locally. 

49. In some quarters it is considered that centralization in the United 
States has progressed too far and is concerning itself with matters which 
might rightly be left to local initiative. Edgar L. Morphet, writing in 1945,^ 
analyzed the problem of state responsibility and concluded that the move 

^E. P. Cubberly, Public School Administration, Cambridge, Mass.: Houghton Miffln, 
1929, pp. 28 et seq. 

2With the exception of Delaware, which is so small that it is more nearly comparable 
to a county than a state or province. 

^Edgar L. Morphet, "Relationship of Education to Government", Forty-fourth Year 
Book, National Society for the Study of Education, Part II, Chicago: University of 
Chicago Press, 1945, pp. 153-186. 


toward state centralization had gone too far in certain states and in others 
not far enoucrh. The Southern States Work Conference^ challenged the 
impHcations of the traditional assumption that education is the exclusive 
responsibilit\- of the state. George D. Straver,- surveying the system of 
public education in the State of West Virginia, asserted that centralization 
in county boards of education in that state had gone too far, and that 
nowhere in the United States was the administration of education so far 
removed from the people. He recommended that local committees be ap- 
pointed or elected for local attendance areas, and that certain definite 
powers be granted to them. His greatest criticism was that the estabHsh- 
ment of county minimum programmes had tended to prevent small com- 
munities which had the desire or the resources to do so from providing 
education in excess of the minimum. Similar criticism has been made of 
the county boards of education in North Carolina, where the state mini- 
mum has tended to become the maximum even in counties which can 
afford to do more. 

Other Provinces of Canada 

50. All the other provinces of Canada, with the exception of Quebec 
and Newfoundland, have tended to follow Ontario's lead in the centrali- 
zation of educational administration. Most of what has already been said 
in this matter in relation to Ontario is therefore true of these seven pro- 
vinces. There are, however, a few minor variations which are worthy of 
note. The formation of larger units of administration, a centralizing trend, 
began earHer and developed more rapidly in some provinces than in 
Ontario. In nearly all cases, when larger units of administration have been 
formed local sub-units of some type or other have been retained with 
elected committees or boards responsible for certain definite matters. Thus, 
the tendency in other provinces has been, as much as possible, to maintain 
local control at the level of the small community while providing for larger 
units to administer those aspects of education which it was impossible, or 
uneconomical, to administer through the small district or section organi- 
zations. The provinces of Alberta, Saskatchewan, New Brunswick, and 
Nova Scotia have avoided the error, which Strayer accuses West Virginia 
of committing and which is also noticeable in the North Carolina system, 
of removing control too far from the local community. In British Columbia, 
although the small local districts were abolished, provision was made for 
school meetings in the various attendance areas within the new larger 

^Southern States Work Conference, Building a Better Southern Region Through 
Education, Southeini States Work Conference on School Administrative Problems Talla- 
hassee, Fla., 1944. 

^George D. Stra>er, A Report of a Survey of Public Education in the State of West 
Virginia, Legislative Interim Committee, State of West Virginia, 1945. 


units to select the delegates who, in turn, elect the members of the larger 
unit boards.^ Furthermore, the units in British Columbia might well be 
considered as community districts. 

51. None of the provinces, in introducing the larger unit of adminis- 
tration, seems to have considered the possibility of decentralizing the func- 
tion of supervision. It is understandable that, in a system where there 
were thousands of small school authorities, supervision had to be a respon- 
sibility of the central authority; but British Columbia, the Prairie Provinces, 
New Brunswick, and Nova Scotia have continued this practice even after 
units of a satisfactory size have been set up. This might easily result in 
an ever greater centralization of all aspects of education in these provinces. 

52. Other ways in which other provinces of Canada differ from Ontario 
in the matter of decentrahzation are as follows: 

( 1 ) In New Brunswick the cities and larger towns employ superintendents 
of schools, appointed and paid by the local education authorities but 
not certificated by the central authority. For purposes of supervision of 
instruction, these urban school systems are almost completely inde- 
pendent of the central authority. 

(2) In Saskatchewan the unit superintendent, an employee of the central 
authority, has recently been given "general supervision . . . over the 
work of the secretary-treasurer and oflBce of the unit board" as well 
as over all schools and teachers in the unit. This is a further indication 
of the trend toward giving the agent of the central authority the real 
power in the locality. 

(3) In the western provinces of Canada and in New Brunswick, the custom 
has been for the central authority to appoint one of its oflBcials as the 
official trustee of a local school unit in which there is no person eligible 
to act as school trustee, where eligible persons refuse to act, or where 
trustees refuse to operate a school. This practice was most marked 
in British Columbia during the depression years; larger units of ad- 
ministration were formed with a provincially appointed director of 
education as oflBcial trustee. The practice stemmed from the recom- 
mendation of the Putman-Weir Report- of 1925, which stated that 
only when ratepayers bear the major portion of the financial burden 
should they be allowed to determine the amount of that burden. The 
practice represents a centralizing trend and reflects the position of 
those" who believe that education should, wherever possible, be com- 
pletely centralized in provincial Departments of Education. 

'See Chapter VIII. 

^J. H. Putman and G. M. Weir, Survey of the School System, Province of British 
Columbia, Victoria: King's Printer, 1925. 

"See Briefs 35, 77, 98, and 171, letter 42 to The Royal Commission on Education, 
and letter 16 to the Department of Education referred to The Royal Commission on 



53. We must now, in the light of all these facts, seek to determine what, 
for our pro\ince, is the most satisfactory division of administrative powers 
and duties between the central and local education authorities. There is 
no question of having a system of complete decentralization or of complete 
centralization: the latter seems to be necessary only under totalitarian 
systems of government. It seems to us self-evident that in a democratic 
society the administration of education should be a partnership between 
the central and local autliorities; our problem, then, is to determine what 
aspects shall be centralized in the name of eflSciency, economy, and equity 
of educational opportimity, and wliich shall be decentralized in the name 
of democratic local control over education and provision for growth through 

54. The people of Ontario are faced with certain definite alternatives. 
In the first place, they may choose to continue as at present with the 
interna of education highly centralized in the Department of Education 
and with some of die externa widely decentralized in the hands of thou- 
sands of small local authorities. In the light of our investigations and the 
ideas expressed in many briefs presented to us, we feel that this alternative 
cannot be accepted. It results in a growing lethargy on the part of the 
people in relation to educational matters. It produces the assumption by 
the central authority of administrative functions which, under other cir- 
cumstances, would normally be assumed by local authorities. Through 
large legislative grants it perpetuates small, ineflBcient, and uneconomical 
units of administration which are unable to discharge effectively any real 
responsibility in relation to the essentials of education. In the second place, 
Ontario could choose to centralize completely the administration of edu- 
cation under the Department of Education. This alternative has been sug- 
gested in briefs as a means of achieving eflBciency and equal opportunity 
for all. We believe, however, that complete centralization is not consonant 
with our ideals of democratic government, and that it would be distaste- 
ful to the vast majority of our citizens. Finally, Ontario might choose to 
adopt the type of organization generally regarded as best suited to a 
democratic society. Under such a plan, the administration of the interna of 
education would be decentralized, with the central authority functioning 
in an advisory capacity and ensuring the maintenance of adequate mini- 
mum standards; on the other hand, the administration of the externa of 
education, which has in the past been decentralized too widely, would be 
centralized— not in the Department of Education, but in local units of ad- 
ministration having a sufficient number of pupils to warrant the employ- 
ment of an adequate staff. This latter seems to be the best organization 
for Ontario, and is the alternative toward which our recommendations are 
directed. We realize, however, that there are factors which may make it 


impossible to achieve this ideal in all parts of the province at once. We 
may have to go slowly; existing relationships cannot be terminated before 
new ones have been firmly established to take their place. 

55. We therefore recommend 

(a) that, to the extent feasible, a policy of gradual decentralization 
of the interna of education be initiated, with increasing control of 
such items as curricula, courses of study, textbooks, supervision 
of instruction, and the establishment and operation of special ser- 
vices being delegated to local education authorities administering 
local school units of such size as to warrant the possession of such 
comprehensive powers and duties; 

(b) that, to the extent feasible, the control of such externa as the 
business administration of schools, the provision of satisfactory post- 
elementary education, the provision of a sufficient number of 
schools, the enforcement of statutory provisions for compulsory 
attendance, the transportation of pupils, or services in lieu thereof, 
the financing of the minimum programme, and capital expenditure 
remain decentralized from the standpoint of the central authority, 
but be centralized under the control of such local education 



56. The basic stand which we have taken in our recommendations in 
this chapter is supported by prominent educationists on this continent and 
in Great Britain. One of the foremost students of educational administration 
in the United States, Professor I. L. Kandel of Columbia University, be- 
lieves that: 

The essential difference between the educational systems of the world is to 
be found in this conflict between moulding youth to a pattern and developing 
free intelligence. On the one side are dictatorships or totalitarian states; on the 
other are those states which have retained their faith in the ideals of democracy . . .^ 

With this view we substantially agree. To the argument that, when edu- 
cation is largely financed by the central authority, control should also 
be in the hands of that body, Kandel gives the following answer: 

Equality of educational opportunity, which is the essence of a democratic 
scheme of education, can only be provided through the concerted efforts of society 
acting through constituted government agencies. But it does not follow that the 
provision and support of education by the State must be accompanied by control 

^I. L. Kandel, "School and Society", in Modern Trends in Education, A. E. Campbell, 
editor. Proceedings of the New Education Fellowship Conference held in New Zealand, 
July, 1937, p. 4. 


from the State. If the interests of society are best served by providing for the 
fullest development of the individual and by the promotion of variety of experience 
due to \arietv of abilities, interests and environments rather than by uniformity, 
then the task of the State is to create the best machinery for their encouragement 
and the concern of the State should not be that all are educated alike according 
to a common svllabus or a prescribed examination but that all should have equal 
opportunities for education accessible to them. A democratic society if it leaves 
both the provision and the control of education to the State is just as much in 
danger as a totalitarian state of establishing a monopoly of education, not only 
to the exclusion of private schools but to the prevention of experimentation and 
adaptation to local needs — whether social or individual.^ 

As to what the function of a governmental authority should be, he states 

The function of a governmental authority in education — whether State or 
local — is to provide the means for promoting equalitv of educational opportunity, 
exercising such supervision as will guarantee equality of educational provision, 
and creating such conditions as will enable teachers to do their best work in 
the school and classroom. For the State to do otherwise would in the end mean 
that it seeks to control the free development of social and national cultme and to 
prevent that adaptation to changing demands by which alone a culture can 

57. Sir Percy Meadon, sometime Director of Education for Lancashire 
and earlier for Essex, has made a somewhat similar statement:^ 

Educational administration has rightly been stated to be one of those sub- 
sidiary services which are in themselves without value except in so far as they 
secure the success of their object . . . The object of educational administration 
should, therefore, be to 'enable the right pupils to receive the right education 
from the right teachers, at a cost within the means of the State, under conditions 
which \\all enable the pupils best to profit by their training.' 

58. The following quotation from Kandel's Comparative EducatioW^ 
more nearly describes the average school in Great Britain than it does the 
average school in the United States of America: 

. . . dijfferences between centralized and decentralized systems lead to a con- 
sideration of those aspects of education in which control may properly be exercised 
by central and local authorities in the interests of education. The centralized 
system assumes control virtually over all aspects of education — the enactment of 
laws, decrees, and regulations, the limits of compulsory attendance, the estab- 
lishment and closing of schools, the character of the school buildings, the prepa- 
ration and certification of teachers, the curricula and courses of study and even 
methods of insh'uction in all types of schools, standards of achievement, textbooks, 
the prescription of salary scales, local administration, and the internal manage- 
ment of schools. Bureaucracy omits no detail, so that when the teacher confronts 
the pupils in a classroom, sometimes decorated and adorned according to regu- 

Ubid., pp. 12-13. 
^Ibid., p. 13. 

'Sir Percy Meadon, "The Administration of Education in England", in Modern 
Trends in Education, pp. .59-60. 

*I. L. Kandel, Comparative Education, pp. 215-217. 


lations, he becomes practically the mouthpiece of the central authority, a skilled 
craftsman very frequently but hewing to the line. Now the question which at 
once arises is whether this is education or propaganda; whether such a system 
does not desti-oy the character of the school as a human institution and of 
instruction as the impact of mind upon mind. Because the essence of such a 
system of administration is mechanization, the results are often mechanical, rigid, 
and formal, and superficially the pupils acquire a certain body of content which 
is neither their own nor their teacher's; it is in such systems that mass education 
is run at its worst. \Miat is mechanized tends to be destroyed; what is over- 
organized tends to be killed. 

. . . Laws and regulations may well deal, since it is in the interests of the nation 
as a whole, with the compulsory attendance, length of school year, the character 
of buildings and playgrounds from the educational and hygienic standpoints, 
medical inspection and health, the size of classes, the qualifications, salaries, and 
pensions of teachers, the provision of a coordinated system of schools to ensure 
equaHty of opportunity — these are the mechanics of an educational system which 
seek to set up those conditions under which the process of education can best be 
conducted. They are the externa which make it possible to bring the right pupil 
to the right school under the right teacher; they ensure that equality of opportunity 
which democratic systems of education are seeking to provide. The interna, 
those aspects of education for the promotion of which teachers and pupils are 
brought together, are the curricula, courses of study, methods of instruction, 
textbooks and standards. These are aspects of education which cannot be legis- 
lated and prescribed from above if genuine progress, adaptation to the pupils 
and their environment, and professional initiative on the part of the teachers are 
to be encom-aged. If the central authority regards itself as the constituted guardian 
and interpreter of national culture, if nationalism and the national ideal are to 
be defined from the same source, if the aim of education is to mould all individuals 
according to a particular pattern, or if a perverted notion of efficiency accepts 
vmiformity bureaucraticallv determined and conh-olled, the interna may be pre- 
scribed by the central authority and not changed until it chooses to do so. If, 
however, the principle is accepted that national culture is not something that 
can be reduced to a fonnula and that national ideals cannot be centrally defined, 
and if the promotion of initiative, growth, and personality based on a sense of 
social duty and obligation is the end of education, then the educative process and 
everything involved in it cannot be govemmentalized. The central authority may, 
however, on the basis of the information at its disposal firrnish guidance through 
suggestions and reports without interfering with that freedom of experimentation 
which makes for variety of character. 

59. Statements concerning centralization and decentralization such as 
those made by Kandel are seldom found in British educational literature 
owing to the Englishman's disinclination to theorize. However, the ideas 
so well expressed by Kandel have been put into practice by the educa- 
tionists of Great Britain. 

60. Authorities seem to be agreed that certain aspects of educational 
administration should be under the control of the central authority, and 
that others should be under the control of local education authorities; but 
very few scientific studies have been made to determine which items 
should be centralized and which should not. There is one such experiment, 


which Mort^ refers to as "the first attempt to throw the light of empirical 
evidence on the nature of activities which should be centralized and those 
which should be decentralized". This was a study by Fran9ois S. Cillie of 
Pretoria, Union of South Africa, made at Columbia University in 1940. 
Cillie made a scientific study of 16 "communities" within the centraHzed 
system of New York City and the same number of decentralized communi- 
ties in the metropolitan area, matched as to geographical, educational, 
financial, socio-economic, and professional factors, to discover the effect 
on 170^ educational adaptations.-^ He set out to test the Mort-Cornell hypo- 
thesis that some adaptations prosper best under decentraHzed adminis- 
tration, that others prosper best under centralized administration, and 
that still others prosper regardless Oi the type of administration. Not only 
did his results verify the hypothesis, but they also showed that adaptations 
prosper in the three above-mentioned situations in the ratio of approxi- 
mately 5:2:10. They showed that 58 per cent of the adaptations prospered 
irrespective of the type of administration; that 30 per cent prospered best 
under decentralized administration; and that only 12 per cent prospered 
best under centralized administration. This does not mean, of course, that 
administration should be divided 30:12 between local and central authori- 
ties. Nor does it mean that it would be better to have a completely de- 
centralized system than a completely centralized one. It might well be 
that the 12 per cent of adaptations which prosper best under centraHzation 
are so vital that they more than outweigh in educational portent the 30 
per cent which prosper best under decentralization. What the study does 
show is that a co-operative system is best; certain aspects of education 
should be centraHzed; and certain aspects should be decentralized. 

61. Table 1 gives a summary of CilHe's findings. In regard to it, we note 
the following points: 

(1) There seems to be evidence that provision for the education of 
markedly atypical children is best left to the central authority. 

(2) The economic security of the teacher should be assured by the central 

(3) Efficiency of administration seems to prosper best under centralization. 
The study does not prove, however, to what extent centralization must 
proceed to achieve the beneficial results recorded. The specific items 

'Paul R. Mort in foreword to Centralization or Decentralization, by Frangois Cillie, 
New York, 1940, p. vi. 

'Chosen from the 183 adaptations in the Mort-CorncU "Guide for the Self-Appraisal 
of School Systems". 

"Defined as follows; "Adaptation in the generic sense has to do with the sloughing 
off of outmoded piu-poses and practices by school systems and the taking on of new 
ones to meet new needs. . . . Adaptation used in the specific sense refers to a single 
instance where adaptation has taken place." Paul R. Mort and Francis G. Cornell, 
Adaptability of Public School Systems, New York: Bureau of Publications, Teachers 
College, Columbia University, 1938, p. ix. 



Summary of Cillie's Findings Concerning the Effect of Centralized 
AND Decentralized Administration on Educational Adaptations 

Adaptation Category 

A daptations 
which reveal 
a significant 

in favour of 

A daptations 
which reveal 
a significant 


in favour of 



ivhich show 



Capacity for Change 
A. Flexibility 




The Individual Pupil 

B. Individualization 

C. Provision for deviates 

D. Provision of health service 





The Teaching Personnel 

E. Democratization 

F. Excellence of personnel 


G. Programme of teacher 

H. Economic security of teacher 










The Curriculum 

I. Vitalization of traditional 

J. Enrichment of the curriculum 
K. Extension of the curriculum 







School and Community 

L. Co-operation between home 

and school 
M. Co-operation between school 

and community agencies 
N. Social orientation of the 











Buildings and Equipment 

0. Extension of material 

P. Implementation of the 

aesthetic principle 





Professionalized A dministration 

Q. Efficiency 











"Figures in parentheses refer to adaptation items, six in number, which were grouped 
in more than one category. 


classed under the category "EflBciency" which Cilli^ found to prosper 
best under centrahzation are the following: 

(a) availability of pupil records to teachers; 

(b) the presence of a research organization in the school system; 

(c) adequate budgetary procedure; 

(d) no localism in personnel appointments; 

(e) continuing analysis of needs; 

(/) all appropriations based upon objective need; 
(g) adequate accounting of all expenditures; 
(h) adequate accounting of all receipts; 
(i) goods and services receipted and checked; and 
(/') annual state or independent audit. 

(4) The capacity for change, as evidenced by the flexibility of various 
aspects of the instructional side (as opposed to the business side) of 
education, seems overwhelmingly to be favoured by decentralization, 
not of business administration, but of authority over such things as 
elementary schedules (time-tables); modification and revision of 
coiu-ses of study; experimental methods, devices and materials; grade 
organization; classroom furniture, etc. 

(5) Another item which prospers best under decentralization is "demo- 
cratization" of teaching personnel. This includes 

(a) co-operative development of courses of study; 

(b) experimentation with methods and devices not included in the 
course of study; 

(c) use of experimental materials in schools; 

(d) encouraging teachers to experiment; and 

(e) teachers given a voice in determining the character and quantity 
of educational supplies. 

(6) Under the heading of buildings and equipment, it is interesting to 
note that Cflhe found that none of the 25 items in the category "Exten- 
sion of Material Provision" was favoured in a centralized system; 
about half of the items prospered independently of the type of admin- 
istration, and the other half prospered best under decentralization. 



1. The size and nature of a local unit of school administration^ are 
mechanical aspects of educational administration. So also are the jurisdic- 
tion of a local education authority,^ the number of its members, the method 
of their selection, and other related matters. All these influence the educa- 
tional programme offered but are not to be considered as ends in them- 
selves. They are the means of achieving a satisfactory environment for 
school activities, and hence must receive careful consideration in any gen- 
eral survey of educational administration, especially as there have been 
strong conflicts of opinion about them in the past. 

The Development of Units of Administration and 
Local Education Authorities in Ontario 

Elementary Education 

2. The first half -century of educational legislation in Ontario witnessed 
a struggle for ascendancy betv/een advocates of two different conceptions 
regarding the constitution of a basic^ unit of school administration. On the 
one hand, were those who believed that the attendance area^ of each school 

^The terms unit of administration and administrative unit are used interchangeably 
in this chapter and refer to the territory which for certain school purposes is under the 
jurisdiction of a single education authority. An administrative unit may itself be part of 
another administrative unit, and may in turn contain other smaller administrative units. 
It may contain any number of schools. 

'As used in this Report, a local education authority is defined as any person or cor- 
porate body which has jurisdiction over local as distinguished from state or provincial 
educational matters. One local education authority may be subordinate to another. 

''Units of administration are classified as basic or intermediate on the basis of their 
relationship to other units. The smallest unit having significant administrative control 
is classed as the basic imit, while any larger unit which exercises financial, supervisory, 
or other control over basic units is an intermediate unit. Basic units can exist without 
intermediate units. The latter cannot exist without the former. 

'An attendance area includes all the territory from which pupils attend a given school 
and may or may not be an administrative unit. It may lie wholly within one administra- 
tive unit, partly in two or more administrative units, or form an administrative unit by 




should be the basic unit, with a board of trustees^ to administer the affairs 
of the school; on the other hand, were those who beheved that a munici- 
paht)- (city', town, or township) should be the basic unit of administration, 
and that one board of trustees should have jurisdiction over all schools 
within the municipalit\\ There was agreement, however, on the desirability 
of an intermediate unit for purposes of supervision and the certification of 

3. Under the Common School Act of 1816,^ the attendance area of each 
school became, in effect, the basic administrative unit. Each school was 
administered by a board of 3 elected trustees. In each district,^ provision 
was made for appointment, by the Governor, of a 5-man board of education, 
the chief dut}' of which was to superintend the schools of the district and 
apportion the legislative grant to the teachers. No local board of trustees 
could dismiss a teacher without the approval of the district board of edu- 
cation. In 1824 the Act was amended^^ so that the power to certificate 
teachers was transferred from the local boards to district boards of education. 

4. In the years between 1824 and 1841, no less than four Bills were 
presented to the Legislature proposing further amendments. None became 
law. We should note, however, what thev proposed, in order to understand 
the ideas to which Ryerson fell heir and which helped to mould the school 
svstem of the province. 

5. The first, introduced by William Buell in 1831, was the only one 
which contained provision for the administration of both elementary and 
secondary schools by the same local authority. It proposed that each town- 
ship*^ be the basic unit of administration for elementary schools, with an 
elected board of 3 superintendents (trustees), and that a 5-man district 
board of education be elected by a group of superintendents ( each of whom 
had previously been selected for the purpose by the local township board ) , 
to have supervision over elementar)' schools, and to be the board of trustees 
of the district grammar school."^ The district was to be the basic unit for 
secondary' education and an intermediate unit for elementary education. 
Buell's Bill was the first attempt to have the township established as the 

^Local education authorities are given various names, one of which is board of trus- 
tees. Others are school hoard, board of education, and municipal council. 

The term municipality, as used in this Report, refers to a local government unit. 
The present municipal organization of Ontario is described below. 

^An Act Granting to His Maiesty a Sum of Money to be Applied to the Use of Com- 
mon Schools Throughout This Province, and to Provide for the Regulation of the said 
Common Schools, 56 Geo. Ill, Ch. 36, S.U.C. 

*The Province of Upper Canada was at that time divided into eight "districts" for 
judicial and other purposes. 

^An Act to make permanent and extend the provisions of the law now in force for the 
establishment and regulation of Common Schools throughout this Province, and for 
granting to his Majesty a further sum of money to promote and encourage education 
within the same, 4 Geo. IV, Ch. 8, S.U.C. 

'Each district contained a number of townships and unorganized territory. 

''See below, paragraph 19. 


basic unit for elementary schools in lieu of the attendance area of each 

6. In 1833 Mahlon Burvvell presented a Bill wliich would have retained 
the attendance area of each school as the basic unit, while providing for 
two intermediate units: the township and the district. Local school trustees 
and township school commissioners were to be elected, and the district 
boards of education were to be appointed. The main change from the 
existing system was the introduction of the township as an intermediate 
unit between the attendance area of each school and the district. 

7. In 1835 a Bill proposed, as had the 1831 Bill, the abolition of school 
attendance areas as basic units of administration and the administration of 
schools by townships. The "inhabitant householders" of each township 
were to elect 3 persons as township school superintendents. These, in turn, 
were to elect or appoint a member of the district board of education. 

8. In 1836 Dr. Charles Duncombe, Chairman of a Commission on Edu- 
cation appointed by the Legislature, presented a report together with a 
draft Bill. He recommended that the school attendance area be the basic 
unit, and that the district boards of education be superseded by township 
boards of school commissioners of 3 members, elected at the same time and 
in the same manner as other township officers. 

9. The General School Act of 1841^ showed the influence of some of 
these rejected Bills, in such matters as the abolition of the office of local 
school trustee and the election of township school commissioners to operate 
all the schools of the township. An innovation, however, was the transfer 
of the powers of the former district boards of education to the newly created^ 
district councils. 

10. This plan of township boards of commissioners was abandoned in 
Ontario in 1843^ after only two years' operation. The attendance area of 
each school asain became the basic unit of administration. The attendance 
area was designated "school district", as Dr. Duncombe had suggested. 
Two intermediate units were created, as proposed in Burwell's Bill of 1833. 
One was the town or city, administered by the municipal council; the other 
was the district, administered by the district council. 

11. The Act of 1846^ was the first in the drafting of which Ryerson had 
a part. Under it the basic administrative unit became the "school section", 
the attendance area of a single school being so designated for the first time. 
The township ceased to be an intermediate unit. The district councils 

^An Act to repeal certain Acts therein mentioned, and to make further provision for 
ike establishment and maintenance of Common Schools throughout this Province, 4 & 5 
Vict., Ch. 18, S.P.C. 

"The District Municipal Act, 1841. 

''An Act for the Establishment and Maintenance of Common Schools in Upper 
Canada, 7 Vict, Ch. 29, S.P.C. 

*An Act for the Better Establishment and Maintenance of Common Schools in Upper 
Canada, 9 Vict., Ch. 20, S.P.C. 


became the local authorities for the district intermediate units. Section 
trustees were to be elected for three-year terms rather than for one-year 
terms as had previously been the case. 

12. The school Act^ of 1847 placed the administration of all schools in 
a cit)' or town under a single school board appointed^ by the city or town 
council, instead of having a board of trustees for each school. A distinction 
was made, for the first time, between schools in urban centres and those 
in rural areas. 

13. In his draft Bill of 1849 Ryerson had made no provision for town- 
sliip school boards, although in comments thereto he indicated his belief 
that the system of township units would soon be acknowledged as superior 
to that in force. Township boards were actually provided for in the Act of 
1850,^ which he prepared, although the school section was made the basic 
unit, except in cities and towns; but such boards could be formed only by 
the afiBrmative vote of the majority of the resident householders of each of 
the school sections of the township. And, since the opposition of one school 
section could defeat the wishes of the rest of the township, only one'* such 
township board had been formed by 1871. 

14. By 1866 Ryerson was convinced that the school section should be 
superseded by the township as the basic unit of administration. In that 
year he personally put the question before 40 county school conventions and 
was supported by favourable resolutions from 25. As a result of this sampling 
of public opinion, he drafted a Bill which included provision for the election 
of township boards when the vote in a majority of the sections of a township 
was favourable; but the Bill was never presented. The same provision was 
contained in Ryerson's draft of a Bill presented in 1868, following his return 
from an inspection of the school systems of Europe. The Bill was held 
over until 1869, when it underwent so many amendments at the hands of 
a select committee that at Ryerson's suggestion it was withdrawn. 

15. The draft Bill prepared in 1870 represented Ryerson's most forceful 
attempt to have township boards supersede school section boards. It pro- 
vided that a county council should have authority "to form any of the 
Townships within its jurisdiction into one School Municipality, as is each 
City and Town, and to establish a Township Board of Common School 
Trustees."^ The consent of even a majority of the sections concerned was 
not required, although such a provision had been a feature of the two 
previous draft Bills ( 1866 and 1869 ) authorizing the formation of township 

Mn Act for Amending the Com7non Schools Act of Upper Canada, 10 & 11 Vict., 
Ch. 19, S.P.C. 

"This method of selecting virban school boards proved unsatisfactory and was re- 
placed in 1850 by the elective method. 

'^An Act for the Better Establishment and Maintenance of Common Schools in Upper 
Canada, 13 & 14 Vict., Ch. 48, S.P.C. 

*The Township of Enniskillen in Lambton County. 

^J. G. Hodgins, Documentary History of Education in Upper Canada, 1869-1871, 
Vol. XXII, Toronto: King's Printer, 1908, pp. 187-8. 


boards by township councils. However, the Act^ which resulted gave 
authority to township councils to form township units, but only where the 
ratepayers of t\\'0-thirds of the sections voted favourably. This provision for 
the formation of township boards remained in force until 1896,- when the 
council of any municipality composed of more than one township in terri- 
tory without county organization was given the power to choose between 
establishing a single public school board for the whole municipality and 
dividing the municipality into school sections. Legislation of 1921 permitted 
the formation of a townsliip school area of "any portion of a township 
lying contiguous to a city or town", if favoured by four-fifths of the town- 
ship council concerned. In 1922 a simple majority of the council was given 
power to establish such a suburban township school area. 

16. In 1925-26 a further attempt was made to establish the township 
as the basic unit of administration for elementary schools. The Minister of 
Education, G. H. Ferguson, introduced a Bill in the Legislature to provide 
for the administration of the public schools in each township by an elected 
board of school trustees of between 3 and 10 members. Each trustee was 
to have authority, as determined by the board, over the schools in one of 
the areas into which the township was to be divided, in such matters as 
repairs, supplies, caretaking, and substitute teachers. There was opposition, 
chiefly from trustees throughout the rural areas of the province, and, despite 
an active campaign waged by the Department of Education to popularize 
the Bill, it was finally withdrawn. Sandiford, writing in 1935, said of this 

He [the Minister of Educationl asked the school trustees to report on the 
wisdom of his scheme, that is, whether or not they should agree to abolish them- 
selves. The answer, of course, was an emphatic negative, for nobody likes to 
relinquish powers, even if these are small and insignificant. Whenever a change 
is made it will have to be made despite the opposition of the existing trustees . . .* 

17. The latest attempt to establish the township as the basic unit of 
administration was made in 1932. Township councils were empowered to 
form all or any part of a township into a township school area and to 
abolish the constituent sections. It was not until 1938, however, that the 
Department attempted to encourage the practice. These efforts together 
with financial inducements in the form of increased grants have resulted in 
the reorganization into township school areas of more than half the former 
public school sections of the province. 

18. Some time before this, in 1919, an endeavour was made to extend 
to rural areas the advantages enjoyed in urban centres, where, since 1847, 

^An Act to Improve the Common and Grammar Schools of the Province of Ontario, 
34 Vict, Ch. 33, S.O., 1871. 

"An Act Consolidating and Revising the Public Schools Acts, 59 Vict., Ch. 70, S.O. 

"Teter Sandiford, "Problems of Canadian Education", The School, XXIII (April, 
1935), pp. 657-658. 



all public elementary schools had been administered by a single local 
authority An amendment was passed permitting the establishment of con- 
solidated school sections when the ratepayers in all the sections concerned 
had ^'Oted in favour of them. In such sections a graded school would be 
operated, thus affording man^' of the advantages to be found in urban 

Secondary Education 

19. No parallel development of administrative units for secondary edu- 
cation has taken place in Ontario. The Public School Act^ of 1807, under 
\\hich grants were made to grammar schools, pro\'ided for the appointment, 
by the Go\ernor, of a district public school board consisting of not less than 

5 members for each of the districts into which the province was divided 
for ciWl purposes. Thus, two characteristics of the present secondary school 
units were established at that early date: the appointment of trustees for 
secondary schools; and the use of the district (county) as a unit of adminis- 
tration. The Act of 1807 remained operative until 1833. By that time it had 
sometimes become necessary, owing to the growth of population, to have 
more than one grammar school in some districts. Where this occurred, one 
board of trustees administered all such schools. 

20. The Grammar School Act of 1853- was drafted by Ryerson in 1850 
as a companion to his Common School Act^ of that year. The newly formed 
counties became the basic units for secondary schools. Six trustees were to 
be appointed for each school by the count)' councils rather than by the 
Lieutenant-Governor in Council. The principle of having trustees serve for 
overlapping terms was introduced. Provision was made for the union of a 
grammar school with the common school or schools of the township, village, 
town, or cit)' in which the grammar school was located. Joint boards of 
grammar and common school trustees, consisting of 8 grammar school and 

6 common school trustees, were to be in charge of such union schools. This 
was the origin of provisions for union boards of education which, with 
amendments, are in force today. Such unions, the majority of which were 
necessar\' to secure local financial support for the grammar school, proved, 
on the whole, to be detrimental both to the common schools and to the 
grammar schools. 

21. In 1865^ several changes were made relating to grammar school 
authorities and units of administration. City, town, and village councils 
were given a share in the appointment of grammar school trustees. Cities 

^An Act to Establish Public Schools in Each and Every District of this Province, 47 
Geo. Ill, Ch. 6, S.U.C. 

-An Act to Amend the Late relating to Grammar Schools in Upper Canada, 16 Vict., 
Ch. 186, S.P.C. 

^An Act for the Better Establishment and Maintenance of Common Schools in Upper 
Canada, 13 & 14 Vict, Ch. 48, 1850. 

*An Act for the Further Improvement of Grammar Schools in Upper Canada, 29 Vict., 
Ch. 23, S.P.C. 


were declared to be counties for grammar school purposes, with the result 
that all trustees of grammar schools located in cities were henceforth ap- 
pointed by the city councils concerned. Union boards were to be composed 
of all members of grammar and common school corporations. 

22. In 1866, after his fourth and last series of county conventions and 
after his final visit to Europe, Ryerson drafted Bills which he hoped would 
result, if adopted, in an Act which might be the coping stone of the edifice 
of publicly supported education in Ontario. They contained ideas on the 
administration of education gained from 24 years of administrative experi- 
ence. The draft of the Grammar School Bill of 1868, like the drafts of the 
Common School Bills of 1868 and 1870, embodied ideas which proved to be 
far in advance of the time. It proposed the dissolution of all grammar school 
boards in cities, towns, and incorporated villages. Elected boards of public 
school trustees were to administer both tlie common schools and the 
grammar schools. High school districts, to be formed by county councils, 
were to be composed of all or parts of one or more townships and villages, 
and to be administered by boards of trustees elected by the ratepayers of 
the districts. The Bill was withdrawn in 1869 and redrafted in 1870 to 
include a few changes intended to satisfy parliamentary critics. Public school 
boards in urban municipalities were to retain jurisdiction over both common 
and high schools, but provision was made for the addition to the elected 
board of a maximum of 4 members appointed by the municipal council. A 
similar clause with regard to elected high school boards in rural areas would 
have given the county council power to appoint 4 additional trustees to tlie 
elected board. 

23. The school Act of 1871,^ however, though in other matters standing 
as a landmark in Ontario educational history, bore little evidence of these 
advanced ideas regarding units of administration and local education 
authorities. Common schools and grammar schools in urban municipalities 
continued as before under different boards, the former elected, and the 
latter appointed. The only change was in name: "public" being substituted 
for "common", and "high" for "grammar". County councils were still em- 
powered to form the whole or parts of one or more townships, towns, and 
villages into a high school district; but instead of an elective board, as 
Ryerson had wished, a board of 6 members appointed by the county council 
was set up as the local authority. 

24. Owing to serious criticism by high school inspectors, the right to 
form union boards was withdrawn by the Act of 1874, but joint boards 
already in existence were permitted to continue and were known henceforth 
as boards of education.^ The right to form union boards of education was 
restored in 1896. 

25. No further changes of importance took place until 1896, when, in 
response to persistent demands from rural communities for improved 

'34 Vict., Ch. 33, S.O. ^Union boards of education. 


facilities for secondaiy education, elementary school authorities were author- 
ized to establish continuation classes.^ These were recognized as continu- 
ation schools in 190S, and in the following year a comprehensive Continuation 
Schools Act- pro\'ided for two t)'pes of continuation school districts: those 
formed b\' one or more public school boards; and those formed by a county 
council. The boundaries of the first type were to be conterminous with those 
of the school section or sections comprising it. Where only one section was 
concerned, the public school board became the continuation school board. 
Where two or more sections were concerned, the board was made up of 
not more than two-thirds of the members of the public school boards 
establishing it. The second type, the district formed by a county council, 
might consist of either a town with or without parts of an adjoining town- 
ship, a village with or without parts of an adjoining township, or a township. 
Even if there were two or more continuation schools in a district composed 
of a whole township, all were to be administered by one continuation school 
board. Boards of such "county continuation school districts" were to be 
composed of 7 members. Three were to be appointed by the county council, 
3 by the local municipal council, and one either by the separate school 
board of a town or village or by the township council from among the 
separate school supporters of the township. Continuation schools proved to 
be popular and their number rapidly increased. In 1913, county continuation 
schools were declared to be high schools, and after that date no more such 
schools were established. 

26. Despite the fact that between 1909 and 1949 the school law per- 
mitted a county to be constituted one high school district, governed by a 
board of 6 appointees of the county council, no such district was ever 
formed. County councils continued to have the right to appoint 3 of the 
members of high school boards in districts composed of municipalities not 
separated from the county, until 1938, when the number of county ap- 
pointees was reduced to one, and the appointment was made permissive. 
The next year, however, a section identical with Section 13 (a) of the 
present High Schools Act was passed, whereby, if a majority of the members 
of the board were favourable, the county council was empowered to 
appoint 3 members. 

27. In 1947^ the councils of two or more adjoining counties were per- 
mitted to form high school districts composed of the whole or parts of two 
or more municipalities situated within the counties concerned. The council 
of a city or separated town might discontinue its high school district and 
provide either for the inclusion of the city or separated town in a new 
high school district or for its addition to an existing one. 

^Continuation classes offered courses in grades IX and X, usually under a separate 
teacher, but sometimes under the supervision of the elementary school teacher in charge 
of the other grades of the school. 

'9 Edw. VII, Ch. 90, S.O., 1909. 

ni Geo. VI, Ch. 42, Sec. 1, S.O. 


Municipal Boards of Education 

28. An Act permitting the election of municipal boards of education 
was first passed in 1903, although legislation allowing the formation of 
union boards of education dates back to 1853,^ and Ryerson's draft Bill 
of 1868 contained provisions similar to those in the present Boards of 
Education Act. The Act of 1903 provided for the abolition, in cities with 
more than 100,000 population,- of the public school board, the high school 
board, and the board of management of technical schools. A board of edu- 
cation was to be formed, composed of 12 members, 10 elected by the general 
ratepayers of the cit)' and 2 appointed by the separate school board. 

29. In the following year permission to form boards of education was 
extended to the councils of cities under 100,000 population and to those 
of towns and villages not included as part of a high school district.^ Boards 
were to consist of members elected by the public school supporters and 
appointed by separate school boards, the numbers varying with the popu- 
lation of the municipalities. 

30. The power to establish a municipal board of education was extended 
in 1909^ to the council of any urban municipality in which the high school 
district did not extend beyond the limits of the municipalit}'. In 1911 an 
amendment required a favourable vote of the electors, following a decision 
by resolution of the council, to establish a municipal board of education. 
The power was later extended to the council and electors of a township 
which was a high school district. 

31. In 1948, county councils were empowered, subject to the approval 
of the Minister, and on the request of the municipal council or councils 
concerned, to pass a by-law establishing a municipal board of education 
for a high school district.^ Such a district would contain all or part of two 
or more municipalities and would be conterminous with a township school 
area, or a township school area and one or more adjoining school sections, 
or two or more adjoining school sections. In the same year provision was 
made for the formation, on the authorization of the Lieutenant-Governor in 
Council, of a municipal board of education for a high school district estab- 
lished by the Lieutenant-Governor in Council. In both of these latter cases 
no provision was made for a vote of the electors. 

32. Since 1949 a municipal board of education may be formed by the 
by-law of a city, town, village, or township council without a vote of the 

*See supra. 

"At tliat time this meant only Toronto. 

'An Act Respecting Boards of Education in Certain Cities, Towns and Villages, 4 
Edw. VII, Ch. 33, S.O., 1904. 

*An Act Respecting Boards of Education, 9 Edw. VII, Ch. 94, Sec. 4, S.O. 
*An Act to Amend the Boards of Education Act, 12 Geo. VI, Ch. 8, Sec. 3, S.O. 
^An Act to Amend the Boards of Education Act, 13 Geo. VI, Ch. 8, Sec. 2, S.O. 


The Municipal Structure of Ontario 

33. In order to understand the present status of school units and boards 
in Ontario, it is necessarv to know something of the municipal organization 
of the province. Southern Ontario^ is sub-divided into 43 counties ( some of 
which have been amalgamated for administrative purposes to form 38 ad- 
ministrative counties), 24 cities, and 7 separated towns. The cities and 
separated towiis, although located within the counties, are separated for 
municipal purposes. Northern Ontario is divided into 11 territorial districts, 
which ha\'e no municipal status and therefore do not correspond to the 
counties of Southern Ontario. 

34. Each county is further divided into a number of 'local munici- 
palities": in total, 93 towns, 146 \dllages, and 429 townships. In most cases, 
the villages and towns are located geographically within the area of a 
township, but municipally they are separated. Within the townships, how- 
ever, there are some 185 "police villages", which, while they have special 
powers over such services as police and fire protection, are integral parts 
of the township for school purposes. Northern Ontario is largely composed 
of territory unorganized municipally, but it is divided into 11 districts for 
judicial purposes. Such organized local municipalities as do exist are autono- 
mous.- In all, there are 5 cities, 46 to\vns, 10 villages, and 143 townships. 
TowTiships in Northern Ontario are considerably smaller than the average 
towTiship in the southern part of the province. Most of them are six miles 

35. The cities and separated towns in Southern Ontario and all munici- 
palities in Northern Ontario are administered by councils, elected by the 
local ratepavers, which are responsible for all phases of local self-govern- 
ment with the exception of education.^ The towns, villages, and townships 
of Southern Ontario, also have elected councils which are responsible for 
most phases of local government. However, the countv councils, which are 
composed of designated members of the councils of the towns, villages, 
and tovimships comprising the county, are responsible for certain matters of 
local government which are the common concern of all the municipalities 
within the county, such as highways, administration of justice, social ser- 
vices, grants for secondare education, and similar services. 

36. Within recent years a new form of municipal organization known 
as an improvement district has been provided for in The Mtinicipal Act. 
Such a district is governed by a board of trustees, appointed by the Lieu- 
tenant-Governor in Council and vested with all the powers and duties of a 
council of a township and of any local board of a township. 

'See Chapter I. 

^hey are. however, subject to provincial authority as exercised by the Minister of 
Municipal Affairs. 

^Such councils have certain powers even with regard to education, as outhned below. 


37. Figures 1 and 2 show the municipal organization of the province. 
Figure 1 is a map of Hastings County in Eastern Ontario. The city of 
Belleville and the separated town of Trenton are located within the 
boundaries of the county but are not part of it municipally. The county 
municipality is composed of one town, Deseronto, 7 villages, 13 townships, 
and 5 unions of townships. These last, although each is composed of two 
or more geographical townships, are single corporations for municipal 
purposes. Each of these 21 municipalities is represented by one or more 
of its members on the Hastings County Council. Figure 2 is a map of the 
territorial district of Thunder Bay. It will be noted that well over half of 
the district has not yet been surveyed into townships. Of some 200 town- 
ships which have been laid out, only 12 are organized municipally. These 
12 are administered by the township councils of Conmee, O'Connor, 
Paipoonge, Neebing, Shuniah, Nipigon, and Schreiber. The municipality of 
Neebing contains 4 townships, and that of Shuniah has 3. There are 2 cities 
( Fort William and Port Arthur ) , one incorporated town ( Geraldton ) , and 
3 improvement districts (Beardmore, Marathon, and Red Rock) in the 
district. The Department of Municipal Affairs acts in relation to the town 
and township municipalities as a county council does in Southern Ontario. 

The Present Status of Local Units of School Administration 
AND Local Education Authorities in Ontario 

38. The present situation with respect to the constitution of local units 
of school administration and local education authorities is, to say the least, 
confusing. The number of types of units and the lack of correlation with 
municipal organization result in a situation where the exceptions are often 
more apparent than the general rule. The accompanying Figures and Tables 
serve to show the complex problem which the Commission has faced. But 
the Tables and Figures are not in themselves suflBcient to permit of an 
assessment of the existing practice in a period characterized by the constant 
dissolution of units of one type and the formation of units of another type. 

39. The units of school administration in Ontario can be classified in 
different ways: according to the type of municipality of which they are 
composed; according to the method of their creation; according to the 
number of pupils enrolled in their schools; according to their area; according 
to whether they are rural or urban; or according to the type and extent of 
education offered by the authority responsible. If we classify units on the 
basis of the type and extent of education offered, we find three chief classes: 
those for the administration of elementary education only (classified in 
Table 1 ) ; those for the administration of secondary education only ( classified 
in Table 2); and those for the administration of both elementary and 
secondary education (classified in Table 3). 



Boundaries of Geographical 

Boundaries of Organized 
Munic i pal i t ies 

Boundaries of Townships 

forming part of 
United Townships 

NOTE: Places underlined 
not parts of the 
administrative county. 

Scale: 1" = approx. 13 mi. 

O) JC C J3 

Q. j: 

e o o. jD 

O O Q- 2: 00 

'H CM (*% =* lO >0 f^ 








c r" 












=3 i ° 



O . 

_^ n- 


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\ 3 

-^/ CO 


T^ UJ 






T ^ 


-f hs 

\ ^ /v 



^ _i:7(.5. 


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I— I 









I— I 





M3Ala ANIva 



40. Units for the administration of elementary education only, may be 
sub-di%ided into three classes: units for the administration of public school 
education onlv; "units" for the administration of Roman Catholic separate 
school education onh'; and units for the administration of Protestant sepa- 
rate school education onlv. In Table 1, these units are sub-classified accord- 
ing to whether they are rural or urban and according to the type of 
municipalitv or municipalities of which they are composed. We have 
included the separate school "units" in Table 1, in order that the complete 
list may be available in one place. Any discussion relative to them will 
appear in the chapter on separate schools. 

For Public School Education Only 

(a) In Rural Areas 

41. The traditional unit for the administration of rural public school 
education has been the "school section". Township councils have been 
required to divide the area of the township into a number of public school 
sections, each usually having an area of about 6 square miles. Township 
councils are empowered to change the boundaries of school sections by 
amalgamating all, or parts, of two or more sections, or by sub-dividing a 
section into two or more new sections. In imorganized townships the 
inspector, subject to the approval of the Minister, is empowered to create 
school sections having a maximum length or breadth of 5 miles. Table 1 
shows that in January, 1949, there were 2,149 rural school sections of these 
three types in existence in Ontario. 

42. The educational affairs of each of these traditional small rural school 
sections are administered by a board, known as a "public school board of a 
rural school section", composed of 3 members elected by the qualified voters 
of the section. Members serve three-year terms, so arranged that one trustee 
is elected each year at the annual school meeting. Elections are by standing 
vote, unless a poll is demanded by any two electors; in the latter case 
voting is by secret ballot. 

43. The Minister is empowered to designate any portion of lands held 
by the Crown in right of Canada or Ontario, or any portion of lands which 
are exempt from taxation for school purposes, as a rural school section, 
whether or not it is located in an organized municipality. There were 24 
such sections in existence in January, 1949. A public school section of this 
type is administered by a public school board of 3 members appointed by 
the Minister; it has the same status as a public school board of a rural school 

44. Although classed as administering elementary education only, public 
school boards of any of the three types of rural school sections mentioned 



above may provide what is known as a fifth class for instruction in the work 

of grades IX and X. 

45. Since 1850 there has been provision in the statutes for the union of 
all the school sections of a township into one section. The board of such 
a unit is commonly referred to as a "township school board". Such a board, 
since technically it has jurisdiction over a rural school section only, although 

Units for the Administration of Elementary Education Only" 





School Sections 

(a) Rural public school sections 

1. School Sections 

(a) Union school sections 

composed of part of one town- 

(i) including a town 




(ii) including a village 


(&) Rural public school sections 

composed of all of one township 


(b) Consolidated sections 


(c) Union school sections 


id) Consolidated school sections 


{e) Township school areas 


2. Urban Municipalities 

(/) Public school sections estab- 

{a) Cities 


lished by Minister 


{b) Separated towns 
(c) Towns 



Improvement Districts 


{d) Villages 


Total Rural 


Total Urban 


Total Public: 3,504 


Roman Catholic 






1. "Sections" com- 
posed of part of 
one or more 
townships 517 

2. Union "sections" 
(Operating more 
than one 
"section") 21 

Totals 538 

1. Cities 27 

2. Metropolitan 
areas 1 

3. Separated towns 7 

4. Towns 82 

5. Villages 18 


1. Schools sections 
with public 
school sections 2 


1. Towns 1 

2. Villages 1 


Total Roman Catholic Separate 

School Units 673 

Total Protestant Separate 
School Units 4 

Total Separate: 677 


^Compiled by the Commission from recent data (1948-49). 
Classed also as urban municipalities. 


a greatly enlareed one, would normally consist of 3 members elected at 
lars;e bv the qualified \oters of the township. Howeyer, the township council 
ma\- decide to provide for a board of 6 or more members, and can determine 
whether it is to be elected at large or by wards. In the latter case the 
number of wards is to be the same as the number of board members. 
Trustees serve overlapping terms of three years. The board of the Township 
of Morrison in the District of Muskoka is the only one still operating in 

46. Where it is necessary or advisable to create a school section from 
adjacent parts of tsvo or more townships, the new section is known as a 
"union public school section", and is formed by the joint action of the 
councils of the to\Miships concerned. At the present time there are 588 such 
rural union pubhc school sections in operation. The board of the unit is 
popularly known as a "union public school board", but its oflBcial name is 
"The Board of Public School Trustees of Union School Section Number . . . 
in the . . .". Except in name, the board is the same in every respect as a 
public school board of a rural school section. 

47. The development of "consolidated school sections" has been noted. 
Although most of these are classed as rural school sections, they are a 
distinct type of unit for the administration of elementary education. Table 1 
shows that at present there are 15 rural consolidated school sections. Such 
a section is administered by a "Board of Trustees of the . . . Consolidated 
School" (inserting name of school), consisting of 5 members elected at 
large in the consolidated school section. Voting takes place at a special 
school election, and members serve overlapping terms of three years. 

48. Rural public school sections, rural union school sections, and rural 
consolidated school sections are rapidly being replaced by "township school 
areas". By Januan^ 1, 1949, there had been formed 481 township school 
areas for the administration of elementary education only. These comprised 
over 3,000 former small school sections. In the counties and in organized 
townships of Northern Ontario, township school areas are formed by the 
township council without a vote being required in the sections concerned, 
although public meetings for discussion are usually held throughout the 
proposed area. In unorganized townships and unsurveyed territory in 
Northern Ontario, township school areas are formed by the inspector with 
the approval of the Minister. In this case, however, the consent of all rural 
school boards concerned is required. Union school sections may be included 
in a township school area onlv with the consent of the councils of the 
townships concerned. 

49. Each of these 481 township school areas is administered by a board 
commonly known as a "township school area board", but which has the 
official title of "The Board of School Trustees of the Township School Area 
of . . .". Each board is composed of 5 members elected at large by secret 
ballot at the time of the regular municipal elections. Members serve for 
overlapping terms of two years. 



above may provide what is known as a fifth class for instruction in the work 

of grades IX and X. 

45. Since 1850 there has been provision in the statutes for the union of 
all the school sections of a township into one section. The board of such 
a unit is commonly referred to as a "township school board". Such a board, 
since technically it has jurisdiction over a rural school section only, although 

Units for the Administration of Elementary Education Only" 




1. School Sections 


School Sections 

(a) Rural public school sections 

(a) Union school sections 

composed of part of one town- 

(i) including a town 




(ii) including a village 


(b) Rural public school sections 

composed of all of one township 


{b) Consolidated sections 


(c) Union school sections 


(d) Consolidated school sections 


(e) Township school areas 



Urban Municipalities 

if) Public school sections estab- 

(a) Cities 


lished by Minister 


(b) Separated towns 

(c) Towns 


2. Improvemeyit Districts 


id) Villages 


Total Rural 


Total Urban 


Total Public: 3,504 


Roman Catholic 






1. "Sections" com- 
posed of part of 
one or more 
townships 517 

2. Union "sections" 
(Operating more 
than one 
"section") 21 

Totals 538 

1. Cities 27 

2. Metropolitan 
areas 1 

3. Separated towns 7 

4. Towns 82 

5. Villages 18 


1. Schools sections 
with public 
school sections 2 


1. Towns 1 

2. Villages 1 


Total Roman Catholic Separate 

School Units 673 

Total Protestant Separate 
School Units 4 

Total Separate: 677 


"Compiled by the Commission from recent data (1948-49). 
Classed also as urban municipalities. 


a greatly enlarged one, would normally consist of 3 members elected at 
lar^e hv the qualified \oters of the township. However, the township council 
mav decide to provide for a board of 6 or more members, and can determine 
whether it is to be elected at large or by wards. In the latter case the 
number of wards is to be the same as the number of board members. 
Trustees serve overlapping terms of three years. The board of the Township 
of Morrison in the District of Muskoka is the only one still operating in 

46. Where it is necessarv or advisable to create a school section from 
adjacent parts of tsvo or more townships, the new section is known as a 
"union public school section", and is formed by the joint action of the 
councils of the towiiships concerned. At the present time there are 588 such 
rural union pubHc school sections in operation. The board of the unit is 
popularly known as a "union public school board", but its oflBcial name is 
"The Board of Public School Trustees of Union School Section Number . . . 
in the . . .". Except in name, the board is the same in every respect as a 
public school board of a rural school section. 

47. The development of "consolidated school sections" has been noted. 
Although most of these are classed as rural school sections, they are a 
distinct type of unit for the administration of elementary education. Table 1 
shows that at present there are 15 rural consolidated school sections. Such 
a section is administered by a "Board of Trustees of the . . . Consolidated 
School" (inserting name of school), consisting of 5 members elected at 
large in the consolidated school section. Voting takes place at a special 
school election, and members serve overlapping terms of three years. 

48. Rural public school sections, rural union school sections, and rural 
consolidated school sections are rapidly being replaced by "township school 
areas". By Januan^ 1, 1949, there had been formed 481 township school 
areas for the administration of elementary education only. These comprised 
over 3,000 former small school sections. In the counties and in organized 
townships of Northern Ontario, township school areas are formed by the 
township council without a vote being required in the sections concerned, 
although public meetings for discussion are usually held throughout the 
proposed area. In unorganized townships and unsurveyed territory in 
Northern Ontario, township school areas are formed by the inspector with 
the approval of the Minister. In this case, however, the consent of all rural 
school boards concerned is required. Union school sections may be included 
in a township school area onlv with the consent of the councils of the 
townships concerned. 

49. Each of these 481 township school areas is administered by a board 
commonly known as a "township school area board", but which has the 
official title of "The Board of School Trustees of the Township School Area 
of . . .". Each board is composed of 5 members elected at large by secret 
ballot at the time of the regular municipal elections. Members serve for 
overlapping terms of two years. 


50. Since the trustees of an improvement district have the powers "of 
any local board" of a township, they have the powers of a school board. 
Thus, the improvement district has become a unit of administration for 
public elementary schools. By January 1, 1949, there were 12 improvement 
districts functioning as township school areas. This is another case where 
appointed persons control the administration of public elementary schools. 

(h) In Urban Communities 

51. Although each city, town, and village has been established by law 
as a unit for the administration of public elementary education, not all 
urban municipalities have public school boards. Some, to be discussed later, 
operate their public schools together with their secondary schools under 
boards of education. Four villages have become integral parts of township 
school areas^ and for educational purposes are classified as rural. On the 
other hand, 26 towns and 47 villages have formed union school sections by 
uniting with portions of surrounding townships. In such cases the rural 
parts of the union section are classified as urban. For educational purposes 
such an "urban union school section" is considered to be an urban munici- 
pality and is administered by a board which is similar to and is elected in 
the same way as a public school board of an urban municipality which is 
not a union school section. 

52. There are 6 cities, 3 separated towns, 69 towns, and 82 villages 
which are units in themselves for the administration of elementary education 
only. Each is administered bv an elected public school board the number 
of members of which depends upon the type of municipality and certain 
other factors, such as population and whether elections are at large or by 

53. The public school board of an urban municipality divided into 
wards consists of trustees elected on the basis of 2 from each ward into 
which the municipality is divided. Trustees serve two-year terms, so arranged 
that one trustee from each ward is elected each year. If the municipality 
is a city with a population over 100,000, the council may pass a by-law, 
after a favourable vote on a plebiscite held on the question, providing for 
the election of members of the public school board at large instead of by 
wards. Boards selected in such a way must consist of 9 members who serve 
overlapping three-year terms. In towns divided into wards boards may 
resolve to limit the number of trustees to 6. In such a case election is at 
large and each member serves a two-year term. Three new trustees are 
elected each year. In each of the three sub-t}'pes of boards mentioned the 
vote may be taken either at the time of the regular municipal election or at 
a special election. 

54. The public school board of an urban municipality not divided into 
wards consists of 6 members elected at large. Members serve over-lapping 
terms of two years. 

^One township area includes 2 villages. 



55. There are two t\-pes of administrative unit for secondary education 
onlv: "hi2[h school districts" and "continuation school districts". Table 2^ 
shows that there are 160 of the former and 114 of the latter, a total of 274. 
Hio^h school and continuation school districts are classified accordincf to the 
method of establishment and the number and type of municipalities com- 
prising them. 

High School Districts and Their Boards 

56. High school districts are formed by one of four methods : by manda- 
tors- legislation; bv counts' councils; bv the joint action of the council of a 
city or separated town and the councils of one or more counties; or by the 
council of one or more municipalities in a territorial district. Originally, all 
cities and separated towns in the province— and for this purpose towns in 
the territorial districts were considered as separated towns— were created 
high school districts by The High Schools Act. Many of these cities and 
separated towns, however, have decided to operate their high schools and 
public elementarv' schools as a unit under boards of education. Only the 
cities of Ottawa, North Bay, Sudbury, and Cornwall remain high school 
districts for the administration of secondary education only. One of the 
separated towns of Southern Ontario and 11 towns in Northern Ontario 
are in the same category. 

57. Of the total of 152 high school districts, 133 have been created by 
the action of one or more county councils. In the counties, high school 
districts may be established, subject to the approval of the Minister of 
Education, by by-laws of a county council or by by-law of the councils of 
two or more adjacent counties. Thev may be composed of any portion of 
the county or counties with or without a city or separated town. The council 
or councils may in like manner discontinue any high school district; such 
a by-law passed before July 1st in any year becomes effective on January 
1st of the succeeding year. Manv of these districts consist of single munici- 
palities—town, village, or township. They may, however, overlap municipal 
or even count)^ boundaries. The Act, indeed, would permit a whole countv 
or two or more counties to be formed into one high school district. 

58. Some high school districts have been formed for the purpose of 
raising money to pay tuition and transportation costs of pupils attending 
schools in other districts. There are three types of such districts— urban, 
suburban, and rural. The first are usually small towns or villages close to 
large cities or towns; the second are new large high school districts, formed 
on the recommendation of countv consultative committees, which, although 
thev may eventually operate their own schools, at present transport their 
pupils to the cities located within their districts; the third are in the three 

'See page 225. 


counties of Brant, Waterloo, and Wentworth, where the county councils 
have established each township as a high school district, thus avoiding the 
necessit)' of making provision for "county pupils". 

59. Until 1945, secondary school units included only a small fraction of 
the area of the province, even in the thickly settled southern peninsula, 
since the great majority of such units were urban municipalities. In 1944, 
however, a beginning was made toward the establishment of "larger high 
school districts". These had as their pivotal points a town or village having 
a high or continuation school. Two such units were set up in Kent County 
in 1944. In 1945 Essex County established six, thereby including almost all 
the county. A formula began to develop for the creation of such districts. 
This called for a minimum local assessment of $5,000,000 and a minimum 
population of 5,000 or 10,000 depending on densit)' of population. The 
boundaries of such districts were to be determined by the county council 
after a study had been made and a report had been submitted by a con- 
sultative committee composed of the local public school inspector, an officer 
appointed by the Department of Education, and 3 members appointed by 
the council. 

60. In 1946, 31 districts were formed in the counties of Kent, Lambton, 
Middlesex, Huron, Perth, Halton, Hastings, and Carleton. The most common 
type of larger high school district operating a school is composed of one 
or more villages plus one or more towns and all or part of one or more 
townships. There were 22 districts of this type on January 1, 1949. There 
were also 21 districts containing one town plus all or part of more than one 
township; there were 13 containing more than one village plus all or part 
of one or more townships; and there were 16 containing one village plus all 
or part of one or more townships. Thus, the great majority of the villages 
and towns in Southern Ontario are now included in the larger high school 
districts. In fact, only 8 towns and 11 villages continue to be high school 
districts. Twenty-three townships have been established as high school 
districts, although 16 of them do not operate schools. The entire County of 
Glengarry, which consists of one town, 2 villages, and 4 townships, has been 
created a high school district by the council of the United Counties of 
Stormont, Dundas, and Glengarr\'. This is the only case of an entire county 
being the basic unit of administration for school purposes, although the 
County of Frontenac, with the exception of one township (Wolfe Island), 
is also a high school district. In the latter county, however, there are no 
incorporated towns or villages. 

61. Two larger high school districts have been formed by the joint action 
of the council of a separated town and the council or councils of adjoining 
counties. The two cities of Kitchener and Waterloo comprise one high 
school district. 

62. In Northern Ontario, high school districts are created at the present 
time by the action of one or more municipal councils. There are, however. 


only 8 high school districts which have been formed in this way— 3 town- 
ships, one village, 3 districts each composed of a town and all or part of 
one or more to\\iiships, and one district composed of 2 towns. 

63. A high school district for the administration of only secondary edu- 
cation may be in charge of any one of four types of boards: a "high school 
board"; a "district liisfh school board"; a "collegiate institute board"; or a 
"district collegiate institute board". The only difference between a collegiate 
institute board and a high school board is that the former operates one or 
more collegiate institutes. High school boards and collegiate institute boards 
administer secondary education in high school districts composed of one 
municipalitv' onlv. District high school and district collegiate institute 
boards control the administration of secondary' education in high school 
districts composed of more than one municipality. 

64. The high school or collegiate institute board of a city or separated 
town is composed of 6 members appointed by the city or to\vn council. 
Each trustee serves a three-year term; 2 trustees retire and 2 are appointed 
each year, so that terms are overlapping. The public school board and the 
separate school board (if any) may each appoint one member to the high 
school or collegiate institute board, to hold ofiBce for one year only. If 
the high school or collegiate institute board notifies the county clerk that 
the school facilities are open to county pupils on the same terms as high 
schools in municipalities not separated from the count)% the county council 
may appoint one additional trustee, to serve a one-year term. If the high 
school or collegiate institute board passes a motion of authorization, the 
count)' council may appoint 3 additional members instead of one, to serve 
for three-year overlapping terms. Thus, the high school or collegiate insti- 
tute board of a city or separated town could consist of from 6 to 11 mem- 
bers inclusive. 

65. The high school or collegiate institute board of a high school district 
comprising one municipality other than a city or separated town is com- 
posed of 3 trustees appointed by the council of the municipality concerned. 
Each year one of these retires and a new trustee is appointed. In the coun- 
ties the board may be increased by the appointment of a trustee by the 
county council, to hold ofiBce for one year. If the board so determines, the 
county council may appoint 3 trustees, to serve overlapping terms of three 
years. There may be one, but only one, trustee (not a member of the ap- 
pointing board) appointed by each of the following: 

( 1 ) The public school board operating a school or schools within the high 
school district and (where there is more than one such board) having 
the highest average attendance of pupils below grade IX for the pre- 
ceding year. 

(2) The board of separate school trustees operating a school within the 
high school district and (where there is more than one such board) 
having the highest average attendance of pupils below grade IX for 
the preceding year. 


The appointment of public and separate school representatives is on an 
annual basis. Thus a high school or collegiate institute board in a munici- 
palit}' not separated from a county for municipal purposes has a minimum 
size of 3 members and a maximum of 8 and could have any intermediate 
number of members. The board of a municipality (other than a city) in a 
territorial district can have 3, 4, or 5 members. An exception to the general 
rule of appointed high school and collegiate institute boards is to be found 
in the high school district of Teck Township where, by special Act, the 

collegiate institute and vocational school in Kirkland Lake is administered 


by an elected board. We have been informed that this arrangement has 
proved to be eminently satisfactory. 

66. District high school and district collegiate institute boards vary in 
composition according to whether the district is composed of: 2 munici- 
palities other than cities and separated towns or parts of them; more than 
2 municipalities other than cities and separated towns or parts of them; or 
a city or separated town and all or part of one or more other municipalities. 
Each municipality, or part thereof assessed for $50,000 or more, in a high 
school district is represented by from one to 6 members, depending on its 
population and on the number and status of the municipalities concerned. 
The appointment of members by public school boards, separate school 
boards, and county councils is also authorized. 

Continuation School Districts and Their Boards 

67. Continuation school districts are of two types: those established by 
one elementary school authorits^; and those established by an agreement 
between two or more such authorities. The authorities in charge of con- 
tinuation school districts are usually referred to as "continuation school 
boards" although, according to The Continuation Schools Act, such an au- 
thority is called "The Board of Trustees of the Continuation School of . . ." 
Table 2 shows that in January, 1949, there were 108 continuation school 
districts each established bv one authority, and 6 established by two or more 
authorities. Of the continuation school districts established by one public 
elementary school authority, 25 consist of single rural public school sections 
not within a township school area; 24 consist of single public school sections 
within a township area; 24 are villages; 10 are towns; 9 are to^^mship school 
areas; 7 are rural union school sections; and 6 are urban union school sec- 
tions. One improvement district^ also functions as a continuation school dis- 
trict. Two continuation school districts have been established in towns- by 
Roman Catholic separate school authorities. 

68. At the present time there are only four continuation school 
districts that have been created by two or more elementary school au- 
thorities: Dublin, composed of one public school section and one Roman 
Catholic separate school "section"; Lafontaine, composed of one township 
school area and one Roman Catholic separate school "section"; Paincourt, 

'Marathon. ^Eganville and Westport. 



Units for the Administration of Secondary Education Only" 

High School Districts 


Continuation School Districts 





1. Created by Legislation 

1. Created by One Public 




Elementary School Authority 

(6) Separated towns 


(a) One town 




(b) One village 


2. Created by County Councils 

(c) One rural public school 

(a) One town 





One village 


(d) One township school area 



One township 


(e) One consolidated school 


Part of one township 





One rural school section 


(/) One rural union school 


All or part of more than one 





(g) One rural public school 


One town plus all or part of 

section in a township school 

one or more townships 





One village plus all or part of 

(h) One improvement district 


one or more townships 


(i) One village plus one or more 


A whole county 


rural school sections 



A whole county minus one 

(J) One town plus one or more 



rural school sections 



More than one town plus 


— 108 


More than one village plus 



2. Created by One Separate 

(m) One or more towns, one or 

Elementary School Authority 

more villages, and all or part 

One town 


of one or more townships 



— 2 

3. Created by Joint Action of 

3. Created by More Than One 

the Councils, of a City or 

Elementary School Authority 

Separated Town and One or 

(a) One public school section and 

More Cities, Separated 

one Roman Catholic separate 

Towns or Counties 

school "section" 


(a) One separated town and 

(b) One township school area and 

parts of three counties 


one Roman Catholic separate 


One separated town and 

school "section" 


parts of a county 


(c) One township school area and 


Two cities 


one Roman Catholic separate 



school union "section" 


4. Created by One or More 

(d) Part of a township school 

Municipal Councils in 

area and one public school 

Unorganized Territory 



(a) One town 


— 4 


One village 



One township 


(d) One town plus all or part of 

one or more townships 



Total Continuation School 

Total High School Districts 





"Compiled by the Commission from recent data (1948-49). 


consisting of one township school area and one Roman Catholic separate 
school union "section"; and St. George, composed of part of a township 
school area and the whole of one public school section not in the township 
school area. 

69. The board of trustees of a continuation school established by one 
elementar)' school authority consists of the public or separate elementary 
school board plus one member appointed, if so desired, by the county coun- 
cil or councils of the county or counties in which the continuation school 
is situated. 

70. Where the continuation school district is a part of a township school 
area, the ratepayers of the former section or sections composing the district 
elect a continuation school board in the same way that they elected the 
public school board prior to the formation of the township school area. 
Thus, in 24 continuation school districts we find the phenomenon of an 
entirely elected board for the administration of secondary education only. 

71. The continuation school district of Marathon is administered by the 
board of trustees of the improvement district. 

72. The board of trustees of a continuation school in a continuation 
school distiict composed of one or more public school sections and one or 
more separate school "sections" is appointed by the elementary school 
boards concerned, and is composed of not more than two-thirds of the 
members of each board. The provision for appointees of county councils 
applies also in this case. The size of the board may, therefore, vary. 

73. The board of trustees of a continuation school in a continuation 
school district formed of part of a township school area and one or more 
public school sections and one or more separate school "sections" outside 
of the township school area is composed of the township school area board, 
2 members appointed by each public school board outside the township 
school area, and 2 members appointed by each separate school board. 

74. The board of trustees of a continuation school in a continuation 
school district composed of part of a township school area and one or more 
separate school "sections" consists of either (a) the township school area 
board and 2 members of the board of each separate school "section" form- 
ing a part of the continuation school district, or (b) members selected by 
the ratepayers of the former school section or sections and members ap- 
pointed by the separate school board or boards. 


75. No units have been formed specifically for the purpose of adminis- 
tering public elementar)' and secondar)' education. The provisions in the 
Acts relate only to the establishment of local education authorities for the 
administration of both public elementary and secondary education. Strictly 



speaking, such an authority, called a board of education, has jurisdiction 
over a high school district and the public school unit which is conterminous 
with it. For the purposes of this chapter, however, and for Table 3, we have 
considered such conterminous units as single units for the administration 
of both public elementary and secondary education. 


Units for the Administration of Public Elementary 
AND Secondary Schools" 




Units Created Pursuant to Provisions of The Boards 

(a) One city 

Q)) One separated town 

(c) One town 

id) One village 

{e) One union public school section containing a town 

(/■) One union public school section containing a village 

of Education 






— 79 


Created by Specl4.l Act 
One township 

— 4 


Created by the Lieutenant-Governor in Council 

One township 

— 1 

Total Units 


''Compiled by the Commission from recent data (1948-49). 

76. In January, 1949, there were 84 boards of education operating m. the 
province. Of these, 23 were in cities, 4 in separated towns, 29 in towns, 9 
in villages, 8 in union public school sections containing a town, and 6 in 
union public school sections containing a village. These 79 boards were 
created either by joint action of the public and high school boards of the 
municipahty or by the municipal council after a favourable vote on a 
plebiscite held on the matter. Four boards of education were created by 
private Acts and are in single townships. The one remaining board of edu- 
cation was established by the Lieutenant-Governor in Council and consists 
of the Township of Merritt in the District of Sudbury. 

77. There are two distinct types of authority having jurisdiction over 
public elementary and secondary educatioii: "union boards of education", 
and "municipal boards of education". 

Union Boards of Education 

78. A union board of education may be formed by uniting the high 
school board of a high school district (composed of a municipality, a part 
of a municipality, or two or more municipaHties or parts thereof) and the 
board of pubUc school trustees of a school section (composed of the same 
area). This union may be effected by filing with the clerk of the munici- 


pality resolutions providing for such union passed at special meetings of 
each of the boards concerned. When such a board has been formed, the 
members continue to be appointed or elected in the same manner as were 
the members of the boards of the high school district and public school 
unit. Thus, the number of members will vary, since such a board can be 
formed by combining many different types of high school and public school 
boards. The minimum mandatory number of members would be 6, since the 
smallest public school or high school board has 3 members. In addition to 
the required number of members, provision is made for additional members 
as follows: one to 3 appointed by the county council; one appointed by the 
public school board; one appointed by the separate school board, if any. 
The terms of oflBce of members of a union board of education vary from one 
to three years, depending upon whether they are appointed or elected. 
Special school elections may be held, or members may be elected at the 
same time as the municipal council. 

Municipal Boards of Education 

79. The municipal board of education is so named because it is estab- 
lished after a resolution by a municipal council declaring its formation 
expedient. In the case of municipal councils from 1911 to 1949, a favourable 
vote of the electors was required on the question "Are you in favour of the 
formation of a Municipal Board of Education?"; but since 1949 a by-law of 
the municipality has suflBced. The consent of the existing high school and 
public school boards is not required. There are 2 chief types of municipal 
boards of education, depending on whether the board has jurisdiction in 
one municipality or in more than one. In the latter case it is known as a 
district board of education. 

80. The board of education (municipal) in a city having a population 
of more than 200,000 (Toronto) consists of 2 members from each ward, 
elected by the voters in the ward, plus 2 members appointed by the separate 
school authority. Members serve for one year "only and are elected at the 
regular municipal election. 

81. The board of education (municipal) in a city having a population 
between 50,000 and 200,000 consists, according to statute, of 14 members, 
12 elected at large at the regular municipal elections and 2 appointed by 
the separate school board of the city. If, by vote of the ratepayers, election 
is by wards, the board consists of 2 members from each ward. However, 
both cities in this population range which have municipal boards of edu- 
cation have had special Acts passed providing for 7-man boards. 

82. The board of education (municipal) in a city having a population 
of less than 50,000 consists of 10 members, 9 elected at large at the regular 
municipal election and one appointed by the separate school board. Mem- 
bers normally serve a two-year term, but they serve only one year following 
a favourable vote of the electorate on the question "Are you in favour of the 


annual election of the members of the Board of Education?" In the case 
of a t\vo-vear term, half tlie board retires each year. 

S3. The board of education ( municipal ) in a town, village, or township 
consists of 8 members, 7 elected at large and one appointed by the separate 
school board. Provisions relating to the term of office are the same as those 
given in the preceding paragraph. 

84. The district board of education (municipal) having jurisdiction in 
all or part^ of two municipalities is composed as follows : 2 members elected 
bv a municipality- ha\ing a population of less than 1,000; 3 by one having 
a population of 1,000 to 2,999; 4 by one having a population of 3,000 to 
5,999; 5 by one having a population of 6,000 or more. Additional members 
mav be appointed as follows: 

(1) One by the separate school board having the largest average daily 
attendance of pupils at a school or schools within the area under the 
jurisdiction of the board of education. 

( 2 ) One by the council of the county having the largest population within 
the jurisdiction of the board of education. 

Appointed members serve one-year terms only. Elected members serve over- 
lapping terms of two years. Trustees are elected at regular municipal 

85. A district board of education (municipal) having jurisdiction in all 
or part^ of three or more municipalities is composed as follows: one member 
elected from a municipality or part thereof having a population of less than 
1,000; 2 from one having a population of 1,000 to 2,999; 3 from one with 
3,000 to 5,999; 4 from one with 6,000 to 9,999; 5 from one with 10,000 or 
more. Provision is made for additiongil members as outlined in the preced- 
ing paragraph. 


86. It is not generally realized that the counties, townships, cities, towns, 
and villages of the province and the councils of these municipalities func- 
tion, respectively, as intermediate local units of school administration and 
intermediate local education authorities for certain phases of education. 

The County Council as an Intermediate Education Authority 

87. Each of the 38 count\' councils of the province functions as an inter- 
mediate education authority with the following powers: 

(1) Either by itself or in conjunction with the councils of one or more 
cities, separated towns, or counties, to establish, discontinue, enlarge, 
and divide high school districts, subject to the prior approval of the 

^A part of a municipality which is assessed for school purposes in the high school 
district for less than $50,000 is not deemed to be a municipality for the purpose of 
appointing members to the municipal board of education. 


(2) To appoint a trustee or trustees to each board of education, district 
board of education, high school, district high school, collegiate insti- 
tute, and district collegiate institute board, and one member to each 
continuation school board, located within the county but not within 
a municipality separated from the county for municipal purposes. 

(3) To appoint one trustee to the board of education, district board of 
education, high school, district high school, collegiate institute, or 
district collegiate institute board of a city or separated town whose 
board has notified the county clerk that the high school or collegiate 
institute is open to count)' pupils on the same terms as high schools 
in municipalities not separated from the county. 

( 4 ) To establish a district board of education ( municipal ) at the request 
of all municipalities concerned. 

( 5 ) To levy and collect as part of the county rates the net cost of the edu- 
cation of county pupils attending a high school or a grade A or grade 
B continuation school in the county. 

(6) To pay out of its general funds the sum of $500 per annum to the 
board of each high school within the count)' where an agricultural 
department is established by the Minister, such sum to be chargeable 
to the general county levy. 

(7) To establish a consultative committee, consisting of a public school 
inspector, an oflScer appointed by the Department, and 3 members 
appointed by the council, for the purpose of reporting upon petitions 
for the setting up of new high school districts or the modification or 
alteration of the boundaries of existing districts. 

(8) To levy and collect for apportionment among all the high schools of 
the county such further sums as it may deem expedient for the main- 
tenance and permanent improvement of high schools. 

(9) To grant additional aid to any one or more of the high schools in the 
county without making a similar provision for the other high schools 

( 10 ) To appoint arbitrators to make an award in relation to the reorganiza- 
tion of the boundaries of public school sections and union school sec- 
tions in a township. 

88. The county is to a limited extent an attendance area for secondary 
school purposes; any county pupil has the right to attend any high school 
or continuation school in the county. 

Resident, County, and Non-resident Pupils 

89. The fact that not all the area of the province is included in high or 
continuation school districts has led to the classification of secondary school 
pupils as resident, non-resident, and county pupils. From the standpoint of 
the board of the school attended, pupils are classed as: 

( a ) Resident pupils 



(i) if they reside with their parents or guardians within the limits 
of the high school district, except when the parent or guardian 
resides on land which is exempt from taxation for school pur- 
poses and does not pay taxes for school purposes in a muni- 
cipality within the district, or 

(ii) if their parents or guardians are assessed in the district for an 
amount equal to the average assessment of the ratepayers of 
the district; 

(b) count)' pupils 

(i) if they reside with their parents or guardians in a part of the 
count\' not within a secondary' school district, provided their 
parents or guardians are school ratepayers in some munici- 
paht\' in the county; 

(c) non-resident pupils 

(i) if thev reside on land exempt from taxation for school purposes, 
provided their parents or guardians do not pay taxes for school 
purposes in any municipalit}'^ in the county, or 

(ii) if they are attending a school in a high school district other 
than one which they are entitled to attend as resident or county 

90. These definitions may be made clearer by reference to Figure 3. E is 
a count)' which contains a cit)' ( A ) , a high school district ( D ) , and a con- 
tinuation school district (C). Resident pupils, indicated by r's, are those 
residing in districts A, C, and D. There is one resident pupil of D (crd) 
who resides in the county, but whose parents own propert)' in D assessed 
for at least the average assessment of ratepayers in D. He can attend school 
in D as either a count)' or resident pupil. There is a resident pupil of A (era) 
who lives in the count)' but is a resident pupil of A because his father is 
assessed for propertv in A sufficient in amount to qualify. He can thus attend 
school in A as a resident pupil or in C or D as a county pupil. Count)' pupils, 
indicated by c's, are those living in that part of the county which is outside 
the citv' and other secondare school districts. They may attend schools in 
either C or D as county pupils. That section of the county marked B is 
Dominion Government properts' and as such is not taxable for school pur- 
poses. Thus the pupils living there, otherwise county pupils, must be classed 
as non-resident pupils (nr). Thev must pay fees to attend any secondary 
school. There is another type of non-resident pupil. Countv^ pupils attending 
school in A would be non-resident pupils of A, as would resident pupUs of 
C or D attending school in A. Similarlv, resident pupils of C would become 
non-resident pupils of D if thev were to attend school in that district. 

City, Town, and Village Councils as Intermediate 
Local Education Authorities 

91. City and separated town councils are intermediate authorities for 
the administration of the following educational matters: 


A - City 

B - Dominion Government property 

C - continuation school district 

D - High school district 

E - county 

r - Res ident pup i 1 

c - county pup il 

nr - Non-resident pupil 

era - County pupil and resident 
pupil of A 

crd - County pupil and resident 
pupil of D 



( 1 ) To discontinue the high school district located in a city or separated 
town and to add it to a part of a county to form a new high school 

(2) To appoint trustees to liigh school and collegiate institute boards and 
to union boards of education. 

(3) Through the sale of debentures, to finance capital expenditures of the 
local education authorities functioning within the city or separated 

( 4 ) At the request of a local education authority having proper jurisdiction, 
to lev)' and collect rates to finance the general programme of education 
in the elementary and secondary schools of the city or separated town. 

( 5 ) To create a municipal board of education in the city or separated towoi, 
\vith the approval of the Minister, when it deems such a course 

92. The council of a town or village not separated from a county for 
municipal purposes is an intermediate authority for the administration of 
the following aspects of education: 

( 1 ) To appoint one to three members, as the case may be, to the high 
school or collegiate institute board or to the union board of education 
of the district of which the town or village forms all or part. 

( 2 ) To establish or dissolve a municipal board of education where the high 
school district is conterminous with the public school unit. 

(3) Through the sale of debentures, to finance its share of the capital ex- 
penditures of elementary and secondary school boards in charge of 
school units all or part of which are located within the to\\Ti or \allage. 

( 4 ) At the request of a local education authority having proper jurisdiction, 
to levy and collect rates to finance the general programme of education 
in the elementary and secondary' schools of the town or village. 

(5) To recommend to the council of the county in which the town or vil- 
lage is located the establishment of a municipal board of education for 
a high school district part of which is composed of the town or village. 

93. The council of a town or village in a territorial district functions as 
an intermediate authority for the administration of the following aspects of 

( 1 ) To establish a high school district either bv itself or in conjunction with 
one or more other such councils. 

(2) To appoint trustees to the board of such districts. 

(3) To establish a municipal board of education for anv high school dis- 
trict located in whole or in part within its boundaries. 

(4) Through the sale of debentures, to finance its share of the capital ex- 
penditures of elementary and secondarv school boards in charge of 
school units all or part of which are located within the town or village. 

( 5 ) At the request of a local education authority having proper jurisdiction. 


to levy and collect rates to finance the general programme of education 
in the elementary and secondary schools of the town or village. 

94. The councLl of a township in a county is an intermediate local edu- 
cation authority for the administration of the following aspects of education: 

( 1 ) To divide the township into public school sections. 

(2) To alter the boundaries of school sections. 

(3) To establish township school areas by by-law passed by a majority 
of the total number of its members. 

(4) To add a section or a union school section to an established township 
school area. 

(5) With the approval of the Minister, to establish a municipal board of 
education for the township if it constitutes one high school district. 

(6) To submit to the county council a resolution declaring it to be ex- 
pedient to form a municipal board of education for a high school dis- 
trict part of which is located in the township. 

(7) Through the sale of debentures, to finance its share of the capital 
expenditures of public elementary and secondary school boards hav- 
ing jurisdiction within the township. 

(8) To audit the accounts of township school area boards. 

( 9 ) At the request of local education authorities having proper jurisdiction, 
to levy and collect rates within the township to finance the general 
programme of education in the elementary and secondary schools of 
the township. 

( 10 ) To make grants to public elementary school boards and to continu- 
ation school boards. 

(11) To appoint public school trustees where the ratepayers fail to elect 

( 12 ) To pay grants to rural school boards, based on teachers' salaries in 
rural schools. 

(13) To appoint and pay school attendance officers. 

95. The council of an organized township in that part of Ontario not 
divided into coimties is an intermediate local education authority for the 
administration of the same aspects of education as is that of a township in 
a county, except with respect to those outlined in items ( 5 ) and ( 6 ) of the 
preceding paragraph. In addition, it may exercise the following powers with 
respect to education: 

(1) To establish a high school district or districts, either by itself or in 
conjunction with one or more other mimicipalities in a territorial dis- 

(2) To enlarge or dissolve a high school district located all or in part within 
the boundaries of the township. 

( 3 ) To appoint high school and collegiate institute trustees, 

(4) Subject to the approval of the Minister, to establish a municipal board 
of education, either by itself or in conjunction with one or more 
adjacent municipalities. 


Complexity of Local School Unit Organization in Ontario 

96. The transitional nature of the current organization of Ontario 
counties for both elementary and secondary education makes it impossible 
to indicate one count)' as "typical". Figure 4 represents an imaginary county 
in which are shown all types of school administrative units found in South- 
em Ontario. It illustrates the bewilderingly complex nature of the adminis- 
trati\e organization which has developed through the many relatively minor 
changes in Acts and regulations. The urgent need for comprehensive re- 
organization is obvious. 

97. The county represented by the map contains one city, which is 
separated from it for all municipal and school purposes. This city is an 
intermediate unit of administration for both public elementary and second- 
ary' education and has been created by law as a high school district and 
as a public school unit. The remainder of the county, known as the adminis- 
trative county, is one intermediate unit for secondary education. It contains 
2 towns (Tl and T2), 4 villages (VI, V2, V3, and V4), and 21 townships 
(A to U ) , which are intermediate units for secondary education and also for 
public elementary education. The school section boundaries are indicated 
for one township (R). If there were a separated town in this county, it 
would be similar in every way to the city. Located within the city but on 
property which does not pay taxes for school purposes is a rural public 
school section created by the Minister. The two towns were both originally 
created high school districts by the county council. Town 1 continues to be 
a high school district; town 2 has been joined with village 1, townships A 
and B, and parts of townships C, F, and G to form a larger high school 
district. Both towns are units for elementary education. Village 2 has been 
united with the surrounding township (N), to form a larger high school 
district. Other larger high school districts created by the county council on 
the recommendation of the consultative committee are composed as follows: 

(a) townships D, E, and parts of C, G, and H; 

(b) township I, parts of townships H, L, and M, and part of the adjoin- 
ing count)^ (created by joint action of the councils of the counties 

(c) township K, and parts of townships G, H, L, O, and P (this high 
school district does not operate a school, but pays the tuition and 
transportation costs of its pupils attending school in the city); 

(d) township S; and 

(e) township T. 

There are five continuation school districts composed as follows: 

(a) village 3; 

(b) one public school section in township O; 

(c) the union public school section made up of village 4 and the sur- 
rounding public school section in township R; 


County boundaries 

Township boundaries 
School section boundaries 

""••.,, High school district 

^J<^ Township school areas or 
^^- township school boards 

•'.-Jt^r Continuation school districts 

'''//^/z consolidated school sections 

\^ Villages 

\^^ Towns 




(d) part of the township school area which is largely in township Q; 

(e) all the township school area which is partly in township Q and 
partly in township P. 

All secondar\' school pupils in the remaining parts of the county (that is, 
not in one of these 13 secondary school units) would be "county" pupils 
and as such would be entitled to attend secondary school in any of the 13 
secondary school districts in the county. Pupils from any of these secondary' 
school districts could attend a hisih school in the city or a high or continu- 
ation school in any of the otlier secondary school districts as "non-resident" 
pupils. This would also be the status of "county" pupils who attended school 
in the cit\'. There are 9 township school areas created by the councils of 
the township or towTiships in which they are located (top to bottom, left 
to right, in the diagram), formed as follows: 

(a) village 1, township A, and parts of townships B and F (this town- 
ship school area is classed as a rural school unit); 
(b) (c) suburban areas, parts of township K, on the outskirts of the city; 

(d) township D and part of a township of a neighbouring county; 

(e) part of township L; 

(/) parts of townships P and Q; 
(g) all of township T; 

(h) parts of townships M, Q, and U and of two towniships in the 
neighbouring county; and 

( i ) part of township U. 
These township school areas operate an average of five elementary schools 
each, most of them one-teacher schools. There is one township, J, which is 
a single unit for elementary school purposes, though it is not a township 
school area. It is operated by a township school board. Villages 2 and 3 
are units for elementary schools. Village 4 together with the adjoining public 
school section forms a union public school section. The remaining portion of 
the count)', exclusive of township school areas, towns, and villages, is 
divided into approximately 85 public school sections each with an area of 
about 6 square miles. These sections are indicated only in township R. The 
section in the lower right hand corner of that township includes a part of 
township S; this makes it a union public school section. Originally, there 
were two sections in the lower left hand comer of this township, but these 
were amalgamated by consent of the ratepayers of both sections to form a 
consolidated school section. 



1. As Egerton Ryerson did more than a century ago, we have examined 
the procedures and principles relating to educational administration in other 
democratic societies so that we might reap the benefit of their experimenta- 
tion and experience. We have confined our studies to the English-speaking 
world, in particular to those parts which operate under decentralized 
systems of educational administration, since we have already affirmed our 
conviction that our recommendations should be directed toward decentral- 
ization in administration. We have looked closely at Great Britain because 
we are a part of its tradition, and at the United States because of its influence 
on educational thought and the similarity of its educational procedure and 
terminology to our own. 

Units and Boards in England and Wales 

2. It is easy to state simply, as is often done, that in England there are 
only 146 education authorities for a community of some fifty million people. 
But such a statement carries with it inferences which are not substantiated 
by a close examination of the system. While it is true that the county council 
is the local education authority for the whole county except county boroughs 
(which are not part of the county for municipal purposes), a further dele- 
gation prevails within the county. The county council, as the local education 
authority, is required to make schemes of divisional administration so that 
the functions of the local education authority "will be exercised with due 
regard to the circumstances affecting different parts of their areas and with 
the co-operation of persons having special knowledge of such circum- 
stances."^ The law further provides, however, that the council of any 
borough or urban district having a population of not less than 60,000 or a 
school enrolment of not less than 7,000 elementary school pupils may 
petition the Minister to be excepted from any such scheme of divisional 
administration. Thus, the county council, although it is the basic local edu- 

^Ediication Act, 1944, 7 & 8 Geo. 6, Ch. 31, First Schedule, Part III, London: His 
Majesty's Stationery Office, p. 89. 



cation authorit\', delegates such duties and powers relating to primary and 
secondar)' education as it deems expedient to the executives of a number 
of minor authorities subordinate to it and administering various phases of 
education in the light of local circumstances and problems. 

Internal Organization and Administration of a 
County Education Authority^ 

3. The administrative organization of an English county education 
authorit}- is showTi diagramatically in Figure 1. Since' there is no ad hoc 
educational body directing education, the primary authority for each county 
is the county council. Provision is made, however, for appointment by the 
count)' council of an education committee or committees. The council's 
functions as a local education authority can be exercised only on the recom- 
mendation or report of an education committee. The council may delegate 
to the education committees any of its responsibilities except those of 
raising a rate and borrowing money. As already stated, in most counties the 
schools are not administered directly by the committee of council and its 
administrative staff; instead, certain powers are delegated to divisional 
executives appointed bv the county council. The councils of excepted 
boroughs and urban districts exercise the functions delegated to divisional 
executives. Thus the county council exercises its administrative authority 
through two t)'pes of administrative bodies: the divisional executive ap- 
pointed by it; and the borough or urban district council elected by popular 
vote. If the authorit)'^ so desires, it may place practically all phases of 
primary education in the hands of the divisional executives and excepted 
district councils and retain for itself the direct administration of secondary 
and further education; but the normal practice is to delegate considerable 
authority with regard to both primary^ and secondary education to divisional 
executives, retaining the powers which relate to further education. 

Composition of Various Educational Bodies in England 

4. An education committee of a local education authority consists of 
an indeterminate number of members, who are appointed by the local edu- 
cation authority ( county council or county borough council ) . The majority 
are members of the authority itself; the remainder, known as co-opted 
members, are appointed for their special knowledge of educational matters. 

5. The divisional executive is composed of an indeterminate number of 
members, who are appointed by the local education authority save in an 
excepted district, in which case the council of the borough or urban district 
exercises the powers of the divisional executive. There is no statutory pro- 

^In this section we shall discuss only the so-called "county" schools, that is, those 
established by a local education authority as opposed to "voluntary" schools estabhshed 
by religious denominations or private organizations. 
































































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vision as to the number of members to be appointed to a divisional execu- 
tive; a membership of between 20 and 30 is recommended as being ordinarily 
suitable.^ The local education authority is legally free to appoint whomso- 
ever it desires. However, the Ministry of Education circular of August 15, 
1944, suggested that thev be appointed from the following categories: repre- 
sentatives of tlie local education authority; nominees of tlie district councils 
wliich are wholly or partl\- within the divisional area; other persons of 
experience in education and acquainted with the area's needs, including 
representatives of industry and agriculture. The circular further suggested 
that, to secure tlie objects of the scheme, the members nominated by the 
district councils should be in the majority and other representation might 
be determined on a population basis. Such things as term of office, dis- 
qualifications, etc. are left to the local education authority, which has, 
however, to be guided by the relevant provisions of the Local Government 
Act, 1933. Employees of local education authorities, including teachers, are 
ehgible for appointment to a divisional executive. Where the divisional 
executive is a council of a borough or urban district, an education com- 
mittee (or committees) is usually appointed by it in much the same way 
as in the case of the local education authority. 

6. The body of managers of a county elementary school is composed of 
not less than 6 members, appointed as follows: two-thirds by the local 
education authority;- and one-third by the minor authority, which, in the 
case of an excepted district, would be the borough or urban district council 
functioning as a divisional executive and, in other cases, the council of any 
borough, urban or rural district, or parish,^ of the area served by the 
particular school. 

7. The body of governors of a county secondary school is constituted 
as determined by the local education authority. No definite number of 
members is laid down, but its purpose requires that it should be large 
enough to ensure that the various interests are adequately represented and 
small enough for all members to participate actively in the conduct of 
business.^ It is assumed that the governing body of each school wHl include 
adequate representation of the local education authority, though the rep- 
resentatives need not necessarily be members of the authority. In some 
cases, the governing body itself is permitted to co-opt a limited number of 
members. It is also considered desirable to have a representative of a 

^D. J. Beattie, P. S. Taylor and E. T. Davis, The New Law of Education, London: 
Butterworth, 1944, p. 280. 

"Appointment of managers is one of the functions which may be delegated to a 
divisional executive. 

^\'Tiere a particular school serves an area which is a rural parish with no parish 
council, the parish meeting is considered to be the minor authority; and where a school 
serves an area of two or more minor authorities, both or all of these acting jointly are 
considered as the minor authority. 

*The median size of the bodies of governors of Northumberland county secondary 
schools is 14, and provision has been made for 15 governors for any new secondary 
school. The present range is from 7 to 17. 


university, particularly of the local university, where one exists, and one or 
more persons associated with the commercial and industrial life of the 
district. Finally, it is felt that the interests of the teaching stafiF, parents, and 
former students should be reflected in the composition of the governing 
body. Although there is no statutory provision for the appointment of any 
of the governors of a county secondary school by the minor authority, such 
membership is not prohibited. 

Joint Education Boards 

8. In spite of the dissolution of the Part III authorities,^ 169 in number, 
the units over which the remaining 146 authorities have jurisdiction are not, 
it is claimed, entirely satisfactory from the standpoint of area and popula- 
tion. The county boroughs are very small in area compared with the counties. 
Most of them have sufficient population to warrant their status as local 
education authorities; but a few, such as Canterbury, which has a school 
population of little more than 2,000, are too small to be empowered with 
all the responsibilities and duties this status entails. The same is also true 
of two of the counties, Rutland and the Soke of Peterborough, and of the 
Isles of Scilly,^ all of which compare in school population with the county 
borough of Canterbury. To meet these situations, the Minister is empowered 
to establish a joint education board to administer all phases of education 
for the county and the county borough. A joint education board, which 
consists of members appointed by the councils concerned, appoints an 
education committee or committees just as does any other local education 

Joint Education Committees 

9. Any two or more local education authorities may, with the approval 
of the Minister, establish a joint education committee for the consideration 
of questions of common interest. Where the Minister considers it expedient 
for two or more authorities to combine to exercise some of their educational 
functions, he may, after consulting them, order the establishment of a joint 
education committee whether they concur or not. The object behind the 
formation of a joint education committee is most commonly the provision of 
further education, especially of higher technical and art institutions which 
may be situated in a county borough though serving the needs of a large 
part of a county area. 

Comments on the English Administrative System 

10. Thus, while there are only 146 authorities in England dealing directly 
with the central education authority, there are nevertheless thousands of 
distinct lesser authorities. The latter do the actual administrative work 
connected with the appointment of teachers, the curriculum, and other 

'See Chapter VII. 

*The Isles of Scilly rank as a county for purposes of the Education Act, 1944. 


matters concerned with both the externa and interna of education. The 
setting of a rate and the borrowing of money for capital expenditure are 
left to the 146 coimcils; but in other matters an attempt is made to keep 
control as close to the people actually concerned with education as is 
compatible with efiBciency. 

Units and Boards in Scotland 

11. In Scotland there is only one type of education authority, and it is 
responsible for all phases of education. There are 37 such authorities, in- 
cluding the 4 burgh councils of Glasgow, Edinburgh, Dundee, and Aber- 
deen. Each school or group of schools has a local school management com- 
mittee, appointed bv the authoritv and consisting of representatives of the 
followdng: the education authority; the parents of children attending the 
school or schools under the management of the committee; the teachers of 
the school or schools; and the town or parish council. The local education 
autliorit)' can delegate to these committees any of its functions except those 
involving the raising of money, the acquisition or holding of land, the ap- 
pointment, remuneration, or dismissal of teachers, and the building of 
schools. This leaves to the committees, if the authority so wills, the drafting 
of curricula, the provision of textbooks, and many other vital functions. 

12. Unlike England, Scotland went through a period during which the 
local education authoritv for each of the large county and burgh units was 
an ad hoc education authority elected by popular vote. Behind the adoption 
of this arrangement was the fear that the schools' interests would be 
swamped "amid the multifarious business of the county councils",^ a view 
held by the churches and labour. These ad hoc boards held sway for eleven 
years; but in 1929 the desire for a reduction in the number of local govern- 
ing bodies, in the interests of economy, led to their abolition and to the 
transfer of their powers to the county councils and the four largest burgh 
councils. As in England, education committees have been established, the 
majorit)^ of whose members must be councillors; the remainder are men 
and women experienced in education, and representatives of the churches. 

Motivating Factors in the Development of Larger Units of 
Administration in Canada and the United States 

13. In pioneer days in North America, educational administration did 
not present any serious difficulties. The community surrounding each indi- 
vidual school, that is, the attendance area of that school, was the adminis- 
trative unit. So long as the prime purpose of elementary education was to 
teach the child to read, write, and cipher, and so long as this purpose could 
be achieved in five or six years of schooling, there was little need of, or 
opportunit)' for, anything but one-room rural schools. Great inequalities in 

'I. L. Kandel, Educational Year Book of the International Institute of Teachers Col- 
lege, Columbia University, 1932, New York, 1933', p. 386. 


















Districts created 
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legislature and 
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It must also be remembered that in these states the county is the chief unit 
of local government, since there are no townships, and in most cases the 
towns and smaller urban communities are integral parts of the counties for 
taxation purposes. 

(2) States Using the Township and Town as Basic Units of Administration 

20. Tliree states— Indiana, Pennsylvania, and New Jersey— use the town- 
ship as the basic unit of administration. The six New England States use 
a comparable unit, the town, which differs from the township in that, with 
the exception of certain cities, it is the only administrative subdivision of 
a county. The town can be urban, or rural, or both. In Indiana, Pennsylvania, 
and New Jersey, the county is used as an intermediate unit with supervision 
as its chief function. In addition to township units, cities and other in- 
corporated centres are also basic units; in some cases independent, and in 
others under the supervision of the county superintendent. Pennsylvania 
has used the township as a basic unit since 1834 but has found in recent 
years that in many cases it is inadequate. The county has been recommended 
as a basic unit for rural schools in that state. 

21. In the New England States, basic units have popularly elected 
boards of education, usually composed of from 3 to 9 members. The cities 
and larger towns appoint superintendents, to whom they delegate a great 
deal of the responsibility for the conduct of the schools. Professional super- 
vision in all other units is provided for by means of v/hat is known as a 
supervisory union. This may be formed either voluntarily or under the 
direction of the State Department of Education. The several school boards 
whose units compose the supervisory imion, or one member from each, 
form a joint committee, the principal responsibility of which is to recom- 
mend or to appoint a union superintendent. In most cases the appointment 
is actually made by the joint committee. 

(3) States Using the District as a Basic Unit of Administration 

22. The majority of states still cling to some form of the school district 
as the basic unit of administration for schools. In all such states, however, 
the county is used as an intermediate unit, chiefly for purposes of super- 
vision. The "districts" vary greatly in both size and composition. Generally 
speaking, rural school districts are dependent units and are under the 
supervision of the county superintendent, usually an elected officer. The 
other type of district is usually autonomous and provides its own super- 
vision through a district superintendent of schools. 

23. It is in the states which use the district as the basic unit that there 
has been the greatest activity during the past decade in making surveys 
and recommending changes in district organization. Some trends which are 
pertinent to the situation in Ontario are noted below. 


(a) Reorganization by County Committees 

24. The most comprehensive method of reorganization of local school 
units in tlie "district" states is that initiated by the State of Washington in 
1941. At that time, for a total state population of 1,750,000 there were 1,323 
school districts. The Washington lecrislation called for the establishment 
in each count)' of a count}^ reorganization committee, to be appointed by 
a body composed of the countv superintendent of schools and one person 
from each school district in the county. The powers and duties of these 
committees included the following: 

( 1 ) To prepare and submit to the state committee within one and one-half 
years of its appointment a comprehensive plan for the reorganization 
of school districts within the county. 

( 2 ) To give due consideration in the preparation of a plan for the reorgan- 
ization of school districts to the educational needs of local communities, 
to economies in transportation and in administration costs, to the 
future use of existing satisfactory school buildings, etc., to the con- 
venience and welfare of pupils, to reduction in disparities in per-pupil 
valuation among school districts, to the equalization of the educational 
opportunity of pupils, and to any other matters which in its judgment 
were of importance. 

(3) To hold public hearings on the feasibility of any proposal which 
involved formation of new districts or the transfer of territory from 
one district to another. 

(4) To prepare and submit to the state committee: a map showing the 
boundaries of established school districts and the boundaries proposed 
by the committee; recommendations respecting the location of schools, 
the utilization of existing buildings, the construction of new buildings, 
and the transportation requirements under the proposed plan; and a 
summary of the reasons for each proposed reorganization of school 

(5) To divide each new school district into 5 sub-districts for the purpose 
of the election of the school board. 

The enactment also provided for the establishment of a state committee for 
the reorganization of school districts, the chief duties of which were to 
aid the county committees in carrying out their duties, and to examine the 
plans submitted by the county committees and approve or reject them. The 
state committee was also given the power to appoint county reorganization 
committees where this was not done locally. The Washington plan is similar 
to that used in Ontario in the reorganization of larger high school districts. 
The chief difference is that the former includes units for the administration 
of all types of schools. 

25. Certain problems arose during the discussion of reorganization plans 
for the State of Washington, problems which seem to arise everywhere 


when reorganization into larger units is mooted. First and foremost, was 
a feeling on the part of some people that the programme was "taking the 
schools away from the people". Chisholm states: 

The chief approach in overcoming the feeling was the fact that that idea is 
erroneous. The purpose back of school district reorganization is simply to 
strengthen the local school districts so that they may function more effectively in 
providing adequate educational opportunities for children and youth. 

Those involved in the reorganization program in the state of Washington 
were staunch believers in the decentralization of education . . . They believed 
that the local school district system (be it a community, township, or county 
district) was and is the major factor in popularizing education and in enabling the 
schools to modify, adapt, and adjust their program to the needs of the children 
of the community . . . Over a period of time, inefficient school districts actually 
contribute significantly to social and economic stratification of life in the state . . . 
The main aim back of school district reorganization, therefore, is to make possible 
a better type of schooling for many chilcfi-en whose educational opportunities are 
being handicapped by inadequate school district organization.^ 

26. By March, 1945, the reorganization programme in Washington had 
resulted in a reduction of the number of school units from slightly less 
than 1,400 to approximately 670. Plans for a further reduction in the 
number of districts were being prepared at the close of the period. County 
reorganization committees were being continued, with duties comparable to 
those they performed during the four years of operation under the special 

27. Following Washington's lead, Oregon, Kansas, Colorado, and Idaho 
have inaugm-ated similar plans of reorganization. Ip Michigan, the Public 
Education Study Commission has recommended the organization of school 
districts on a community basis througrhout the state. Such districts would 
maintain both elementary and hioh schools under the same board of edu- 
cation. All rural school districts and all other districts having populations 
of less than 10,000 would be reorganized on the basis of natural centres of 
population large enough to have an enrolment of 360 pupils in grades VII 
to XII. The Michigan plan, as well as that for Kansas, does not go so far as 
to suggest complete consolidation of elementary schools, even within such 
a community district. More than one elementary school could be maintained 
in the district for pupils of the first six grades. The actual drafting of pro- 
posed boundaries would be left to county organization committees of 9 
members, including both lay and professional persons. Such plans would 
first have to be acceptable to the state superintendent of education and the 
boards of education of the districts concerned, and would then be submitted 
to the electors for approval or rejection. 

^Leslie L. Chisholm, "School District Reorganization in the State of Washington" in 
Your School District, Department of Rural Education, Washington, D.C., 1948, pp. 227- 


(b) The Central Rural District Law of New York State 

28. The State of New York has many similarities to the southern part 
of Ontario, and the formation of the small rural school section in Ontario 
was originally greatly influenced by the situation in the neighbouring state. 
The present administratiye units in Ontario are similar to those in the State 
of New York. In both, over 50 per cent of the rural school districts have 
been amalgamated into larger units. In Ontario these units are township 
school areas, still operating small rural elementar)' schools; in New York 
State they are central rural districts, operating such schools for pupils from 
grades I to VI and in addition a central school for pupils above the grade 
VI level. In recent years there have been recommendations for accelerating 
reorganization in the state. One is that intermediate units be created to 
ser\'e as operating units between the state and local districts for functions 
specifically assigned. They would provide educational, administrative, and 
business management services which cannot be most effectively provided 
in the component districts. They would have a minimum enrolment of 
5,000 pupils. The county was not recommended as the intermediate unit, 
although it was suggested that it might function as such in a few cases 
where it coincided with an ideal unit. 

(c) The Count}^ as an Intermediate Unit in Ohio 

29. Ohio offers a good example of a state using the county as a strong 
intermediate unit for purposes of supervision, and the city, village, and 
consolidated districts as the basic units of administration. The predominant 
types of basic units are the independent city and village districts, and the 
dependent rural districts, most of which are consolidated. These consoli- 
dated rural districts correspond very closely in size to the township school 
areas in Ontario. They differ in that, in most cases, they operate one central 
school instead of a number of small schools. They differ, too, in that they 
offer education from grades I to XII. County boards of education, elected 
at large, select a county superintendent with supervisory powers over the 
dependent districts. When a dependent district attains a population of 
3,000, it may elect to become an independent district and thus be no longer 
under county supervision. This is a factor hindering the formation of 
completely satisfactory units, since the count)^ board, wliich is empowered 
to make recommendations for the reorganization of the dependent districts 
within its boundaries, would hardly do so if it meant increasing the popu- 
lation of a district beyond 3,000. It has been recommended that the pre- 
scribed minimum population for an excepted district be raised to at least 


30. Our investigations indicate that the current trend in school district 
reorganization in the United States is away from the adoption of the county 


or any specific municipal unit as the basic unit of administration and toward 
the adoption of the type of larger unit known as the "natural community 
district". Such a district has territor)', valuation, and population sufficient to 
maintain both a satisfactory secondary school and one or more elementary 
schools. There is definite hesitancy to reorganize the districts by manda- 
tory legislation, although such legislation is used to establish machiner)% 
almost always on a county basis, for reorganization by local agencies in 
co-operation with state authorities. Changes enforced by mandatory legisla- 
tion are limited to those that can be justified as a necessary exercise of its 
power by the central authority in order to assure the maintenance of a 
minimum programme for all schools. 

Units and Boards in Canada 

31. Units of administration in the various provinces of Canada have not 
all developed in the same way, although development in each province has 
been influenced by what has happened in the others. For many years the 
provinces of Canada, except Quebec, had a somewhat parallel development. 
This resulted from the influence exerted by the Ontario system on the 
Western and Maritime systems, owing both to the fact that the system 
founded by Ryerson was one of the best on the continent at the time and to 
the fact that most of the early settlers of the West came from Ontario. The 
pattern usually followed involved roughly the following two steps: 

( 1 ) The populated area of each province, including the urban centres, was 
divided into hundreds of small rural school sections or districts, or into 
urban wards. Each of the former averaged about 4 to 6 square miles 
in area, supported one school, which had usually but one teacher, and 
was administered by an elected board of school trustees, usually 3 in 

(2) "Districts" within cities and towns were amalgamated to form one 
school unit under a single board. 

At the turn of the century these two steps had been taken in six of the 
seven provinces existing at that time. With the exception of the organization 
in Ontario, the subsequent changes in each province will be dealt with in 
the order in which the province adopted the larger unit of administration. 

British Columbia 

32. In 1905 each organized municipality,^ rural and urban, within the 
Province of British Columbia was made one school district by mandatory 
legislation. In unorganized territory, however, comprising over 90 per cent 
of the area of the province, the one-teacher school district remained. Pro- 
vision was made in 1916 for the voluntary formation of consolidated school 

'There are 28 "district municipalities" which correspond roughly to Ontario town- 
ships (most of them rural, but some cities in all but name), and 33 "cities"; of the latter, 
only 3 would be classed as cities in Ontario, the remainder being similar to towns and 


districts, but few were organized. In 1925 the Report of the Survey of the 
School System, submitted by Commissioners J. H. Putman and G. M. Weir, 
recommended that consoHdation of assisted schools be carried out wherever 
it seemed educationally or financially desirable, despite disapproval of 
local boards. 

33. In Canada the term "larger unit of school administration" was first 
used in connection with the famous Peace River Educational Area. It was 
formed during the years 1934 to 1936 by abolishing the boundaries of 63 
impoverished rural school districts in the pioneer country of the Peace 
River Block in the north-east comer of the province. Provision was made 
for the administration of the whole of the area as a single unit by a pro- 
vincially appointed officer in conjunction with a central advisory commit- 
tee and local advisory committees for each school. This absence of signi- 
ficant local control occurred because the province was paying practically 
100 per cent of the cost of operating the schools; it was in accordance 
with the recommendation of the Putman-Weir Report that, where the 
government paid the full salary of the teacher, it should also have the 
right to engage or dismiss him. Two years' operation of this unit proved 
that its greatly improved educational programme could be maintained at 
an actual saving of several thousands of dollars. 

34. This successful experiment on a large scale convinced educators 
across Canada of the possibilities of the larger unit as a solution for the 
educational problems developed by social changes and aggravated by the 
depression. It resulted in legislation in Alberta, New" Brunswick, Nova 
Scotia, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, and Ontario to enable the establishment 
of larger units of administration. 

35. But in British Columbia itself the plan was not immediately adopted 
throughout the province. The Peace River Block is British Columbia's only 
territory within the Great Plains area of Canada. The topography of the 
rest of the province, which lies within the Cordilleran Region, has resulted 
in widely separated pockets of population. Such conditions require a dif- 
ferent type of organization. 

36. In 1935, when the two adjacent rural municipalities of Matsqui and 
Sumas in the lower Fraser River Valley became financially unable to pro- 
vide education, the Department of Education persuaded the trustees of 
the two districts and of the Village of Abbotsford to form a larger unit of 
administration for an experimental period of three years, during which 
time they would be guaranteed no increase in taxes for school purposes. 
The area was made a demonstration centre for modem education. Obsolete 
school plants were modernized; teachers' salaries were raised; special ser- 
vices were provided, such as health, night schools, and adult education; 
high school education was centralized; and pupils in small inefficient schools 
were transported to central schools. All this was achieved for 23 per cent 
less money than was originally needed to maintain only the mediocre ser- 


vices of two of the component districts. Since the end of the three-year 
period the ratepayers of the area have continued the new system. In the 
Matsqui-Sumas-Abbotsford Administrative Area, as in the Peace River Area, 
there was originally no school board; the schools were administered bv a 
Director of Education, appointed by the provincial Department of Edu- 
cation, acting as the official trustee. This removal of administrative authority 
from local control was a temporary measure only; eventually, school boards 
were elected, and control was returned to the local communities. 

37. A third experiment was concerned with the co-operation of rural 
areas with neighbouring cities. Twenty-one rural school districts in the 
Nanaimo-Ladysmith area of Vancouver Island were formed into a single 
unit. The same type of administrative organization was used as in the two 
earlier experiments. Five elementary schools were established at pivotal 
points in the district, to which pupils were transported. Secondary school 
facilities were provided by the two cities on a fee basis for rural pupils, 
who were transported to them at the expense of the larger unit. 

38. The success of these experiments led to the appointment, in 1944, 
of Maxwell A. Cameron as a Commission of one to inquire into educational 
finance and the administrative relationship between the province and the 
school districts. The chief recommendations of his Report concerned school 
finance and suggested that the province's share in the cost of education be 
increased. In order to ensure that financial equality would be coupled with 
educational equality and that an inefficient administrative system would 
not be perpetuated, the Report also recommended concurrent changes in 
district organization, chief among which were the following: 

(1) The province should be divided into 74 larger school districts. 

(2) Cities, towns, villages, consolidated schools districts, high school dis- 
tricts, community school districts, and municipal school districts, as 
well as purely rural school districts, should be included in the reor- 

(3) Districts were to vary greatly in both area and population. 

(4) The proposed districts should be both fiscal and basic administrative 
units and should not be sub-divided; the previous component districts 
should be abolished, and the district board elected at large in the new 

(5) The system of school districts should be reorganized without seeking 
local approval. 

(6) Fifteen isolated districts should remain unattached to the larger 

The British Columbia Legislature adopted the recommendations of the 
Cameron Report, and the schools of the province are now operating under 
89, instead of the former 653, education authorities. 

39. Each of the 74 large school districts has an elected board of school 
trustees of 5, 7, or 9 members, as determined by the Minister of Education. 
These boards are elected in one of two ways, depending on the municipal 


organization within the district. If the district contains all or part of an 
organized municipality, the board is elected by ballot at the time of the 
regular municipal elections. If it does not, the board is elected by a dele- 
gate system as follows: the school inspector defines school attendance areas 
within the enlarged district; an annual meeting of the qualified voters is 
held in June in each school attendance area, at which time delegates are 
elected from the qualified \oters to represent the attendance area at a 
special meeting held to elect the district board. The number of delegates 
to be elected at a given meeting is determined by the size of the school 
located in that attendance area. Each of the 15 unattached districts still 
elects a 3-man board. 


40. In 1905, when the Province of Alberta was first constituted, there 
were 476 school districts, each having an area of about 16 to 20 square 
miles. Most were rural and all were autonomous. By 1935 the number had 
increased to 3,859, including 52 city and town districts which had provided 
educational facilities far in advance of those offered by the vast majority 
of the smaller districts. The consolidation movement had made some pro- 
gress, so that there were 45 consolidated school districts at that time, 34 of 
which had been in existence since 1917. 

41. Efforts before 1936 to set up larger units of administration by leg- 
islation failed owing to opposition led by the School Trustees' Association. 
The first two large units to be formed were a direct result of far-reaching 
changes in two sections of the province: the influx of large numbers of 
families to Turner Valley, following the discovery of oil; and depopulation 
in the drought-stricken Berry Creek area. In both areas, since the small 
school districts were unable to cope with the new situation, a single admin- 
istrative unit was formed. The success of these experiments led the newly 
formed Social Credit Party to support the formation of larger school units 
as a major plank in the party platform. On being elected in 1936, the Social 
Credit Government immediately amended the School Act to provide for 
the reorganization of part of the province into 48 school "divisions". A 
division usuallv consisted of from 50 to 80 rural school districts and was 
divided into 5 "sub-divisions" for election purposes. Boundaries were deter- 
mined in accordance with topography, transportation facilities, population, 
marketing centres, and community of interests. City, town, village, consoli- 
dated and separate school units were not included in the divisions. Other 
divisions have since been formed, with the result that at the present time 
all the rural sections of the province, with the exception of a few isolated 
ones, are included in 58 school divisions. There is a definite trend also 
toward the inclusion of village and town districts in the divisions. 

42. The elementary and secondary schools of each division are admin- 
istered by a divisional school board of 3 or 5 members, each representing 
a sub-division and elected for a period of three years. A provincially ap- 


pointed inspector, known as the divisional superintendent, acts as adviser 
to each board and supervisor of instruction for the division. He also super- 
vises instruction in the city, town, and village districts which are located 
within, but do not form a part of, his division. Local, 3-man, elected school 
boards continue in existence in the residual districts;^ but their duties are 
largely advisory except when religion or the French language is a subject 
of instruction in the elementary grades; then they have the right to nomi- 
nate the teacher to be appointed. Centralization or consolidation of atten- 
dance areas is a matter for individual decision by each division. Except in 
the south the tendency has been, chiefly because of the sparsity of popu- 
lation, to continue to operate one-room schools. 

Nova Scotia 

43. The problem in Nova Scotia di£Fered somewhat from that in either 
of the two western provinces mentioned above. The three chief reasons 
were: the relatively high density of population; the fact that the entire area 
of the province was divided into 18 counties; and the size of the rural 
municipalities, which in most cases were conterminous with the counties. 
The Superintendent of Education explained, in his annual report for 1926, 
the need for a broader basis of financial support for rural schools; and he 
continued each year until 1937 to advocate the adoption of the munici- 
pality as the unit for school finance. A Commission appointed by the govern- 
ment in 1939 recommended that the municipality be the fiscal unit, and 
that it have certain other administrative powers. Enabling legislation was 
passed in 1943, and an educational campaign, led by teachers and inspec- 
tors and supported by the home and school associations, was launched to 
explain the scheme to the general public. The plan went into operation in 
two counties on an experimental basis in September, 1942. Further cam- 
paigns were carried on in succeeding years. In 1942 there were 1,753 school 
units in the province, consisting of 2 cities, 43 towns, and 1,708 rural and 
village- sections. At the present time all 21 rural municipalities are single 
units for the administration of schools. 

44. The change to the larger unit in Nova Scotia depended on a favour- 
able vote by the ratepayers of a majority of the local school sections in 
the municipality concerned and the approval of the municipal council. The 
determining factor in the voluntary adoption of the larger unit appears to 
have been financial. Such part of the cost of the minimum programme as 
was raised by local taxation was fixed, and all additional costs were borne 
by the provincial government. 

45. Each municipal school unit is administered by a municipal school 
board of 7 members, 3 appointed by the municipal council, 3 by the Lieu- 

'A residual district is one which has surrendered most of its administrative functions 
to the board of a larger unit. 

^There are no incorporated villages in Nova Scotia. A village section is defined as 
one having a school of more than one classroom. 


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tenant-Governor in Council, and one— the municipal clerk— being an ex 
officio member of the board. The local, elected, 3-man boards remain; but 
their chief powers are exercised in tlie expenditure of a small annual sum 
for maintenance needs and in levying for capital expenditures and for exten- 
sions to the minimum programme. Figure 2 shows the present organization 
of school units in Nova Scotia. At the present time the province has a 
total of 65 basic school units— 21 municipal units and 44 city and town units. 
Provision has been made for the latter to join the municipal units on a 
voluntary basis. 

New Brunswick 

46. The factors mentioned above as distinguishing Nova Scotia from 
the two most westerly provinces of Canada also apply to New Brunswick, 
except that in the latter province the rural municipality coincides with the 
county in all cases. There are 15 counties, with an average area of 1,865 
square miles. There are 3 cities, 19 incorporated towns, and 4 incorporated 
villages, all of which are integral parts of the counties in which they are 
located, except the City of Fredericton, which, by a special Act of the Legis- 
lature, has been separated, for school purposes only, from the County of 
York. Each county is sub-divided into parishes, which correspond roughly 
with the township in Ontario except that they have no municipal organi- 
zation. Each parish is divided into from 2 to 30 school "districts", cor- 
responding to the rural school "sections" of Ontario and Nova Scotia. 

47. The consolidation movement began early in New Brunswick but 
was never very successful, largely because of the increased financial burden 
on the local ratepayers.^ There was a widening gap between the educa- 
tional facilities provided by the small districts and those provided by the 
larger units in cities and towns. The demand for secondary education of a 
diversified type increased. There was a decline in real-property values in 
non-urban areas, with the consequent impoverishment of the small rural 
district; and tax inequalities existed between individual districts, parishes, 
and counties. All this led in 1931 to the appointment of a Commission on 
Education which recommended in part: 

(1) That the county be established as the financial unit for school purposes. 

(2) That a county school commission of 7 be appointed, 3 by the Lieu- 
tenant-Governor in Council, and 4 bv the county council. 

(3) That the inspector be the oflBcial adviser of the school commission. 

(4) That the annual school meeting continue to be held, and that trustees 
be elected, as before, to administer the local affairs of the district 
within the financial limits set by the county school commission. 

(5) That a provincial tax commission be appointed to secure an equali- 
zation of valuations for taxation purposes throughout the province. 

^While it is true that larger units of administration are more economical than small 
ones for provision of comparable services, it is nevertheless true that total educational 
costs often increase because of vast improvement in facilities offered. 


(6) That a provincial equalization fund be set up, so that the rate of tax- 
ation for financing and maintaining schools might be the same in the 
various counties. 

(7) That each urban and town district be given the option of becoming 
part of the county system. 

No action was taken on this report when it was presented to the Legislature. 
48. In the summer of 1937 a summer school class in rural school admin- 
istration made, under the guidance of its instructor— the first regional direc- 
tor of tlie Peace River Educational Area in British Columbia— a survey of 
King's County. It advocated a county unit somewhat similar to that advo- 
cated by the Commission in 1932. Although legislation was passed per- 
mitting the establishment of the county unit in King's County, no such 
unit was formed, chiefly because, although services woidd have been greatly 
improved, the cost to local ratepayers would have been increased. The 
problem was attacked from a new angle in the early years of the Second 
World War, when a campaign was waged for rural high schools through the 
consolidation of school districts. This new plan for consolidation differed 
from the earlier proposal in several ways: 

(1) As far as possible only pupils of grades VII to XI were to be trans- 
ported to the central school. Small one-room schools were to be im- 
proved and used for pupils below grade VII. 

(2) The regional high school was to be a composite school, offering both 
the academic course and vocational courses related to the basic occupa- 
tion of the community concerned. 

Under this legislation, three such schools were established in areas which 
previously had had no high school facihties. The movement was hindered 
by lack of government building grants and by the great inequalities in tax 
rates among the various districts considering consolidation. This usually 
meant a considerable increase in the tax of the wealthier districts and a 
corresponding decrease in the tax rate of the poor districts. Under these 
circumstances local jealousies usually triumphed over educational needs. 

49. From 1943 on, the province assumed 40 per cent of the cost of 
building and 50 per cent of the cost of equipment of rural high schools. At 
the same time the financing of rural schools was put on a county-unit basis. 
Permissive in form, the Act^ allowed the establishment by the council of 
any county, upon the request of the majority of the rural school districts in 
the county, of a county school finance board of 7 members, 3 appointed by 
the Lieutenant-Governor in Council and 4 by the county council. 

50. The financial scheme which gave the necessary impetus to the 
county-unit plan is briefly as follows: 

(1) The county becomes the unit for taxation and for financing the mini- 
mum programme, while the districts remain as basic administrative 
'County Schools Finance Act, 7 Geo. VI, Ch. 34, S.N.B., 1943. 


units and as units for the financing of additions to the minimum pro- 

( 2 ) All provincial and county grants are paid as heretofore and in addition 
10 per cent of the net budget is paid by the province. 

(3) Each year the province pays an additional amount equal to 10 per 
cent of the net budget, intended as an equalization fund within each 
county, to be used to bring sub-standard schools up to a minimum 
standard and thereafter gradually to raise that standard. 

51. The county unit in New Brunsv/ick cannot actually be classed as a 
basic unit of administration, since the power to appoint teachers and to 
finance capital expenditure remains with the boards of the local districts. 
These are of two types: 

(1) The small rural school district, administered by an elected board of 
3 trustees, and usually operating a one-teacher school. This type is 
rapidly disappearing. 

( 2 ) Consolidated school districts, each operating from 12 to 36 one-teacher 
schools for pupils of grades I to VI and a rural composite high school 
for pupils of grades VII to XII. 

It is hoped to group the non-urban school districts of the province into 
approximately 50 such consolidated districts or "regions", as they are to be 
called. Of these, 27 have been planned and 13 are in operation. Each con- 
solidated district or region is administered by a board of from 5 to 9 mem- 
bers, of which the majority are elected at large and the remainder appointed 
by the Lieutenant-Governor in Council. 

52. Provision is made for city and town districts to join the county 
units by agreement, and one town has already done so. New Brunswick, 
therefore, has only 36 fiscal units: 15 county units and 21 town and city 


53. After the formation of the Province of Saskatchewan in 1905, the 
southern half of the province was quickly covered with a network of small 
local school districts, each approximately 20 square miles in area. Pro- 
vision was made in 1913 for the establishment of consolidated school dis- 
tricts, not smaller than 25 and not larger than 50 square miles in area; but 
these were not as successful in Saskatchewan as elsewhere in the West, and 
there were only 41 such units in 1944. 

54. The province was hard hit by the depression of the 1930's, and 
school conditions at that time reached an all-time low. In 1937 a com- 
mittee of Saskatchewan teachers, in a report prepared for the Canadian 
Teachers' Federation, proposed that larger administrative units be formed, 
each consisting of from 60 to 75 districts and comprising approximately 
4 municipalities. Finance and the employment of teachers were to be the 
responsibility of the larger unit boards, and other duties were to be left 


with the local trustees. In 1939 a Committee on School Administration ap- 
pointed by the Saskatchewan government recommended^ that: 

( 1 ) Several experimental larger units be set up after a favourable vote of 
the ratepayers in tlie areas concerned; these units to include from 60 
to 75 districts each. 

(2) Each unit be divided into 5 or 6 sub-units, each to elect a trustee to 
the unit board. 

(3) The powers of unit school boards be similar to those possessed by 
division boards in Alberta. 

(4) Separate, consolidated, village, and town schools be excluded, with 
provision for their inclusion on special terms to be agreed on. 

(5) After five years of operation, the ratepayers be given the opportunity 
to decide by vote whether or not the unit is to continue in operation. 

(6) District boards be retained, but have no powers over finance or employ- 
ment of teachers. 

55. In 1944 the Saskatchewan Legislature passed The Larger School 
Units Act, which implemented the recommendations of the Committee's 
report except in the following respects: 

( 1 ) Resident ratepayers of the proposed unit may petition that a vote be 
taken before the unit is set up; otherwise the unit may be set up by 

(2) Teachers are appointed and paid by the unit board. However, the unit 
board is required to appoint one of a panel of nominees presented by 
the district board, if the latter so desires. 

(3) Each unit is under the supervision of a superintendent appointed by 
the Minister. 

(4) Village schools are included in the school units. 

56. In 1944 there were 4,571 school districts in operation in the pro- 
vince. By 1949, 46 larger school units had been formed and 20 more were 
planned. In 1945 the Department of Education organized the remote 
northern area of the province into an administrative unit under its direct 
control. Seventeen schools are in operation in the area, the complete cost of 
education being borne by the province. 

57. The method of establishing the larger units in Saskatchewan allowed 
for the operation of local opinion in a negative rather than a positive way: 
the establishment of such units proceeded except in those cases where 
resident ratepayers or the proposed unit petitioned that a vote be taken. 
Apparently very few such petitions were received, as 45 units were set up 
during the first year following the passing of the Act. 

58. Each larger unit is administered by a school unit board composed 
of 5 or 6 elected members. Each member is elected from a sub-unit which 
exists solely for this purpose. A sub-unit member is not elected by the 

^Report of the Committee on School Administration to the Minister of Education for 
Saskatchewan, Regina: King's Printer, 1940. 


ratepayers but by a body of delegates, selected by the trustees of the 
residual districts. This is one of the few cases found in Canada or the United 
States where membership on a larger unit board is controlled by the boards 
of the residual districts. 


59. The original basic unit of school administration in Manitoba was 
the small local "district", operating one school, patterned after the Ontario 
school section. Originally, this small district, often isolated, had almost 
complete autonomy in education. Gradually, however, with increasing de- 
mands for better educational opportunities, the basis of financial support 
was broadened from the district to the municipality^ the only ci\il sub- 
division in Manitoba.^ At an early date the municipality became an inter- 
mediate unit, responsible for the larger part of the financial contribution 
toward the operation of schools. Thus, one of the most cogent reasons for 
establishing larger units of administration— the spreading of the burden 
of school support over a larger area— did not apply to the situation in Mani- 
toba. But another reason, the provision of secondar)' education for rural 
children, was suflBcient to bring about the establishment of 103 consoli- 
dated school districts in the province between 1905 and 1919. Since that 
date no new one has been formed and two have been dissolved. 

60. In 1910 enabling legislation for the establishment of municipal 
school districts was adopted. Such districts were to consist of the munici- 
pality as the basic administrative unit rather than as onlv the fiscal inter- 
mediate unit. Not until 1919 did a municipality vote to adopt such a plan. 
This municipality, Miniota, has remained the only such unit in the pro- 
vince. This fact has led opponents of reform to argue that the rural people 
of Manitoba do not favour the larger unit of administration. The ineffec- 
tiveness of the Act, however, can be explained in otlier ways: 

( 1 ) It provided for no increased legislative grants; indeed, on the contrary, 
it stipulated that the legislative grant to the municipal district could 
not exceed the aggregate grant to the original districts comprising it 
until the number of teachers employed became greater than the 
number pre\aouslv employed bv its constituent districts. 

(2) The provision of high school education, increased salaries, new modem 
buildings, better equipment, and transportation of all pupils living 
more than one mile from school greatly increased the cost of education. 
This increased cost had to be borne entirely by the ratepayers of the 

(3) As previously noted, taxation had been already partially equalized bv 
using the municipality as the unit for taxation. 

'For municipal purposes Manitoba is divided into 115 rural municipalities, 30 towns, 
23 \illagcs, 4 cities, and one municipal district, plus a large area of unorganized territory-. 
The majority- of municipalities consist of from 6 to 12 townships and from 216 to 432 
square miles. There are no counties. 


After 1919 little was achieved toward the establishment of larger units. 
Despite the recommendations of the Assessment and Taxation Commission 
in 1919, the Educational Commission in 1924, and the Special Committee 
of the Legislature on Suburban Problems in 1925, no legislation for larger 
units was enacted. 

61. However, with the development in other provinces of larger units 
in the late 1930's and during the war, interest was renewed, and a Special 
Select Committee of the Legislature was appointed in 1944 to survey the 
whole educational field in Manitoba. In 1945 this committee recommended 
the establishment of experimental large school areas modelled on those in 
Alberta and Saskatchewan and, if these proved successful, the extension 
of the plan to the whole province. Special features of the recommendations 
of the Select Committee with recrard to these school areas were: 

(1) Units should be large enough to provide complete elementary and 
secondary educational programmes, including provision for differenti- 
ation of educational opportunity. 

(2) Units should conform to rational divisions; thev should be grouped 
around local community centres, have similarity of conditions, and have 
good road communications. 

(3) TowTis and villages should be included as natural community centres. 

(4) Local boards should be retained with certain definite powers, among 
which would be the right to nominate a panel of teachers. 

(5) Manv one-room schools were to be continued in operation. 

(6) The problem of consolidation of attendance areas should be left with 
the area boards. 

(7) A majoritv vote of the ratepavers within a proposed area should be 
necessarv for the formation of a larger administrative unit. 

( 8 ) An educational campaign should be carried out by the Department of 
Education to promote the acceptance of the idea by the people of the 

(9) The province should assume 50 per cent of the basic operational costs 
of education. 

62. Within a year an Act was passed providing for the establishment 
of tsvo such experimental school areas. The first of these is now in oper- 
ation — the Dauphin-Ochre River Area. All the listed features of the report 
were incorporated in the Act, with the exception of the last. The fact that 
no other area has since been formed suggests that the voluntarv formation 
of larger units without special financial inducements ( as in New Brunswick 
and Nova Scotia) is impracticable. 


63. There are two separate and distinct systems of education in Quebec, 
based on religious aflBliation. One is termed the Catholic Committee Svstem 
and the other the Protestant Committee System. The latter system actuallv 


includes the education of all those who are not Roman Catholics. Since 
1841 the township has been the basic unit of rural school administration 
for both systems. One board of school commissioners administers all the 
schools of the majority religious group in each municipality, whether rural 
or urban, and one board of school trustees administers all the schools of 
the minority religious group. The fact that units have always been large 
enough to avoid many of the weaknesses of the small district system, and 
the fact that the secondary school problem is not so acute as elsewhere, 
owing to the large number of private residential schools established by 
religious communities, are chiefly responsible for the lack of any major step 
toward the formation of larger units of administration in the Roman Catholic 
school system. Another factor is the existence of over 100 vocational and 
agricultural high schools, administered under the Department of Social 
Welfare and Youth and the Department of Agriculture, wliich has tended 
to lessen the demand for the composite high school. 

64. The situation in the Protestant school system is somewhat different. 
The Protestants are in the minority in most of the school municipalities; 
and in an area comparable to a township there are seldom more than 
enough pupils to warrant the establishment of a single school. For this 
reason the movement toward larger school units has been very strong in 
the Protestant system. The first step was the formation of consolidated 
schools, primarily for the purpose of providing high school education. By 
1943 there were 49 consolidated school districts operating in the Protestant 
system of Quebec. The second step, in 1925, was the formation of the 
Montreal Protestant Central School Board, composed of the Cities of Mont- 
real, Westmount, Outremont, Verdun, and Lachine, and 6 other towns and 
municipalities on the Island of Montreal. This was an intermediate unit for 
financial purposes; the 11 municipalities continued to elect their own 
boards, which engaged and dismissed teachers and administered their 
schools much as they had always done. The Central Board was the fiscal 
body, raising all revenue, fixing salary scales, and approving budgets and 
the number of teachers to be employed.^ 

65. In 1938 a Survey Committee under the chairmanship of W. A. F. 
Hepburn, Director of Education, Ayrshire, Scotland, made the following 
recommendations : - 

( 1 ) That the Montreal Protestant Central School Board be extended to in- 
clude all Montreal Island and some adjoining mainland suburbs, and 
that the smaller boards be abolished; educational policy and adminis- 
tration to be directly in the hands of the central board. 

(2) That the remainder of the province be divided into 9 districts with 
elected boards, with local boards of commissioners or trustees retained 
for certain purposes. 

^Cf. the New Brunswick county finance boards. 

^W. A. F. Hepburn, Protestant Education in the Province of Quebec, Report of the 
Quebec Protestant Education Survey, 1938. 



Le2;islation iii 1943 provided for larger areas when a majority of the school 
municipalities concerned voted in favour of the change. The Act followed 
the recommendations of the Hepburn report very closely, except in the size 
of the central school districts where it followed proposals made in 1937 
that IS central school boards be formed in those communities in which 
Protestants were most numerous. 

66. Since 1945, 10 county central school boards have been formed, and 
application has been made for the formation of another. The local boards 
lew and collect the taxes but pay all moneys into the central board for 
disbursement. The chief duties of the central school boards are: 

(a) to enage teachers for all the schools in the unit; 

(b) to establish schools wherever necessary; 

(c) to exercise supervision over all phases of education within the 

(d) to appoint supervisors when necessary; and 

(e) to study the reports of local boards. 

No administrative or other expenses mav be met by any local board unless 
they are included in its budget and have been approved by the central 
school board concerned. 

67. In 1945, 9 of the 11 Protestant school boards operating under the 
Montreal Protestant Central School Board transferred their administrative 
duties to it. The remaining 2 boards, those in Westmount and Outremont, 
continue to administer their own schools but are financed as part of the 
larger unit. 

Prince Edward Island 

68. Since Prince Edward Island has continued to operate under a system 
of small districts, little assistance for our purpose can be gained from 
experience there. The unfortunate failure of the first consolidated school 
in Canada, which was located on the Island, nullified the recommendations 
of a Royal Commission of 1910 that all schools in the province be reorgan- 
ized as consolidated schools. The school began operation in 1903 and was 
discontinued in 1912 owing to the greatly increased cost to the ratepayers. 
In 1945 the Interim Report of the Prince Edward Island Advisory Recon- 
struction Committee recommended the reorganization of the whole pro- 
vince as one unit for purposes of educational finance and the gradual 
establishment of approximately 30 areas or regions for high school pur- 
poses, each to be presided over by a board. In 1948 the Assembly passed 
legislation providing for the establishment of large high school districts. 
The high school board was to be composed of 7 members— 3 appointed by 
the Lieutenant-Governor in Council and 4 elected by a group consisting 
of 2 representatives from each of the districts comprising the area. A major 
feature of the plan, which is now in operation, is that the boards are con- 
trolled by representatives of the small elementary school districts, the high 
school education of whose pupils it administers. 



69. Since Newfoundland did not become a province of Canada until 
1948, we have not felt it necessary to include material relating to units 
and boards in that province. In any event, the system of education which 
obtains in Newfoundland is entirely difiFerent from that in any of the other 
nine provinces. 


70. Units of school administration and local education authorities in 
Ontario have been dealt with fully in the previous chapter. The modified 
towiiship is now the basic unit for public elementary school administration 
in over half of the former rural school sections. However, owing to advances 
in the fields of transportation and communication, as well as to increasing 
demands for a ts^pe of secondar)' education which experience has shown 
requires support from a population of approximately 3,500 people, the vast 
majority of Ontario townships cannot be considered satisfactory units for 
the administration of education. Experience in British Columbia, Saskat- 
chewan, and many parts of the United States indicates that for the ideal 
community school district a larger and more populous area than the 
average Ontario township is required. 

71. Although the many suggestions made to us on this topic show a 
wide variet}' of opinions, the great majority have reference to a unit of the 
size of a county or inspectorate.^ Most of those submitting briefs, how- 
ever, placed emphasis on what they wished an administrative unit to accom- 
plish rather than on its size or tv'pe. 

Summary for Canada 

72. In Canada the general trend is definitely toward larger units of 
administration. However, there does not seem to be any corresponding 
trend toward decentralization of control over interna. In fact, the appoint- 
ment of inspectors or superintendents by the provincial authorities rather 
than by the larger-unit boards may well foreshadow an ever increasing 
centralization of all forms of educational authorit)' in provincial Depart- 
ments of Education. In all provinces, attention has been focussed on the 
excessive decentralization of many aspects of the externa; and, in the 
changes made to effect a remedy, there may have been a failure to appreci- 
ate the possibility of danger in excessive centralization in provincial Depart- 
ments of Education of the interna, the meat of the educational sandwich. 

73. The type of larger imit favoured has depended to a large extent on 
the municipal structure of the province, the density of population, and the 
topographical conformation. However, except in British Columbia, there 
is a trend toward the adoption of two tvpes of units: the larger unit proper, 
an area having either municipal or topographical coherence and large 

^See Brief 16 submitted by Ontario Citizens' Forum; Brief 36 submitted by the 
Ontario School Trustees' and Ratepa\ers' Association; and Brief 69 submitted b>' the 
Ontario Educational Association. 


enough (having approximately 100 teachers) to serve as the supervisory 
unit of a provincialh' appointed inspector, serving as the basic fiscal unit 
for current expenditures on the minimum programme; and the community 
district, a unit large enough to operate a secondary school and one or more 
elementar\- schools, ser\'ing as the fiscal unit for capital expenditures and 
additions to the minimum programme. 

74. In forming the larger units proper, where the municipality is small, 
as in Alberta, Saskatchewan, and Manitoba, the policy has been either to 
disregard municipal boundaries altogether or to combine a number of 
municipalities. Where the rural municipahty is large, as in New Brunswick 
and Nova Scotia, the policy has been to make the larger unit coincide 
with it. 

75. The community districts \'ary greatly. The following are the chief 
t}'pes : 

( 1 ) The consolidated school district, consisting of one central school where 
all grades from 1 to XI or XII are taught. Usually such a school has 
only one or tvvo high school teachers or none at all. This type is 
usuallv the result of reorganization during or immediately following 
the First World War and cannot be considered a satisfactory example 
of a larger unit. 

(2) The village or town district forming part of the larger unit, also con- 
sisting usualh' of a single school containing both elementary and high 
school departments. 

(3) The rural composite high school district, consisting of from 10 to 30 
one- or two-room schools for pupils of grades I to VI, I to VII, or I to 
VIII, and a central composite high school for the remaining pupils. 

(4) The one-teacher district, usually offering only elementary education 
in grades I to VIII. In such districts, high school pupils attend: 

(a) high schools in excepted urban districts; 

(b) high school rooms in neighbouring included districts; or 

(c) regional high schools established and operated by the larger-unit 

76. In the selection of the members of local education authorities, the 
trend has been to retain the traditional method. Thus, New Brunswick and 
Nova Scotia have appointed boards in charge of their county units, similar 
to those they previously had in their cities and towns. The western pro- 
vinces have retained elected boards. A departure has been the practice, 
already described, of using a delegate system in the election of unit boards 
in Saskatchewan and of high school boards in Prince Edward Island. 

77. Where a system of election prevails, all electors usually have the 
right to vote for candidates. The ward system has been introduced in the 
Prairie Provinces, based on the claim that the larger unit is so extensive 
that voters in one part do not know the candidates in the other parts. One 
favourable aspect of this system is that it gives adequate but not dispro- 
portionate representation to both urban and rural parts of the unit. 



1. In all countries, practices relating to local units of administration are 
under constant scrutiny for the purpose of recommending improvements 
in administrative organization. As a result, we have been able to consult a 
wealth of material on the subject, including the reports of Commissions, 
surveys, and controlled experiments. We have directed our attention par- 
ticularly to topics relating to local units of school administration; and, since 
we have already recommended that the administration of the interna of 
education be decentralized, we have concentrated on those findings which 
are consistent with such decentralization. 

Current Opinions 

Nature of a Satisfactory Unit 

2. The opinion of the majority of those who have studied the problem 
of local units of school administration in Canada and the United States is 
that two criteria should determine the basic unit of administration in a 
decentralized system: there should be a communit}' of interests within the 
unit; and there should be a sufficient number of pupils to warrant the opera- 
tion of a modem school system extending from kindergarten to high school 
graduation. Thus Cameron^ stated that for British Columbia the unit should 
be based on a population large enough to provide a reasonably adequate 
schooling from grades I to XII and should be understandable to the local 
people as a commimity, economic entit}% or trading area. The Special Select 
Committee of the Manitoba Legislature- set up similar criteria, as did 
Baird.^ Support of the community-centred district is found in the United 

^Maxwell A. Cameron, Reiiort of the Commission of Inquiry into Educational 
Finatwe, Victoria: King's Printer, Province of British Columbia, 1945, p. 86. 

-Report of the Special Select Committee of the Manitoba Legislative Assembly on 
Education, Winnipeg: King's Printer, 1945, p. 16. 

^Norman B. Baird, Educational Finance and Administration for Ontario, Unpub- 
lished Doctor's Thesis, University of Toronto, 1946, p. 214. 



States in investigations such as those of Butterworth,^ Greene and Mea- 
dows,- Mulford,^ and the Michigan PiibHc Education Committee.^ 

Relation between Local School Units and Municipal Boundaries 

3. Whether or not municipal boundaries should be considered in estab- 
Ushing the boundaries of community-centred districts depends largely on 
the size of the rural municipaHt)^ Where the rural municipality is small, the 
best practice seems to be to disregard municipal boundaries. Thus Cameron^' 
speciJBcally recommended that municipal boundaries be disregarded in "re- 
districting" the province of British Columbia. Plenderleith,^ in recommend- 
ing satisfactory attendance areas for a New Brunswick county, disregarded 
parish boundaries. Where the rural municipality is the county, or a unit 
comparable in size, most authorities recommend that it become the basic 
unit. Thus, the county has been recommended by Plenderleith, Baird,'' the 
Trustees' and Ratepayers' Department of the Ontario Educational Asso- 
ciation,^ Sandiford,^ McGuire,^*^ the Arkansas Education Association,^^ the 
Idaho Education Survey Commission^- and the Ohio School Survey Com- 
mission.^^ The rural municipahty was recommended by Fletcher^^ for Nova 

^Julian E. Butterworth, "A New Attack on Rural School Problems", Natian's Schools, 
XXXIII (Januan-, 1944), pp. 29-30. 

"Crawford Greene and A. R. Meadows, "Structural Organization of State School Sys- 
tems", American Education in the Postwar Period, Forty-fourth Year Book, Part III, 
National Societ>' for the Studv of Education, Chicago: University' of Chicago Press, 1945, 
pp. 118-152. 

^Herbert B. MuJford, "Marked Progress in Effort to Reorganize 1200 Illinois Public 
School Districts", American School Board Journul, CXII (February, 1946), p. 58. 

^Michigan Pubhc Education Study Commission, "Local Administrative Structiure", 
The Improvement of Public Education in Michigan, Chap. 8, Lansing, Mich.: the Com- 
mission, 1944. 

"Maxwell A. Cameron, op. cit., p. 86. 

*\ViILiam A. Plenderleith et ah. The Plenderleith Report on Kings County Educational 
Survey, New Brunswick Department of Education, Fredericton, 1938, p. 58. 

"Norman B. Baird, op. cit., p. 217. 

^Ontario Educational Association, Resolutions Passed by the General Association of 
the Ontario Educational Association, Easter, 1938, and presented to the Department of 
Education, June, 1938 (Trustees' and Ratepayers' Department). 

^Peter Sandiford, "Problems of Canadian Education", The School. XXIII (April, 
1935), pp. 654-659. 

^"J. F. McGuire, Inspector of Public Schools in the Counties of Leeds and Gren\'ille, 
in Report of the Committee of Enquiry into the Cost of Education in the Province of 
Ontario, p. 55. 

"Arkansas Education Association, Handbook of Information on School District Re- 
organization Acf- Proposed Initiated Act No. 1, Little Rock, Ark.: the Association, 1946. 
( Mimeo. ) 

^^John E. Brewton (director). Public Education in Idaho, Report of Idaho Ediication 
Survey Commission, Nashville, Tenn. : Division of Surveys and Field Studies, George 
Peabody College for Teachers, 1946, p. 517. 

^"Thomas C. Holy, "The Reorganization of School Districts," American School Board 
Journal, CX (April, 1945), pp. 39-41. 

"B. A. Fletcher, The Next Step in Canadian Education, Toronto: Macmillan, 1939. 


Scotia, but in that province the municipality is in most cases conterminous 
with the county. 

4. As between a county and a township, the former may be the more 
satisfactory unit, since it usually has a population sufficient to support an 
adequate system of elementary and secondary schools. The boundaries of 
a county may sometimes divide communities, but they are more likely than 
those of a township to contain a single cultural or economic community. 

5. In some cases, where the rural municipality is too small to support 
an adequate system of schools, and where the county is too large to be con- 
sidered as a "community", authorities have suggested the use of the county 
as an intermediate unit with control over certain aspects of education. Pea- 
cock^ favoured the use of the community -type district as the basic unit for 
the administration of both elementary and secondary education in New 
Brunswick, and the county as the supervisory and fiscal unit. For the Que- 
bec Protestant system, Hepburn^ recommended units larger than the county 
as intermediate units in charge of certain matters. The Iowa School Code 
Commission^ advised the strengthening of the county intermediate unit. 
Butterworth^ has recommended the establishment of intermediate units 
having a minimum population of 5,000. Reusser and Wochner,^ in recom- 
mending the county as the basic unit in Wyoming, have suggested inter- 
mediate units composed of several counties for the administration of cer- 
tain phases of education, particularly business administration. 

Status of Urban Centres 

6. Opinion is divided as to the desirabilit)^ of including urban muni- 
cipalities in larger units of administration. Some authorities believe that all 
urban centres .should be included; this is particularly true of those who 
favour the smaller community-type unit, in which the basic unit is the small 
cit\' or town together with the surrounding hamlets, villages, and rural ter- 
ritory which serve and are served by it. These authorities, however, con- 
sider a large city as an entity in itself, although even in this case they would 
not necessarily recommend the city boundary as the school-unit boundary, 
especially if some of the suburban and rural population could be more 
satisfactorily served by the large city than by another community-type dis- 

^Anntuil Report of the Department of Education of the Province of New Brunstcick 
for the School Year Ended June SOth, 1941, Fredericton, 1942, pp. 18-19. 

^V. A. F. Hepburn, Protestant Education in the Province of Quebec, Report of the 
Quebec Protestant Education Survey, 1938. 

'American Educational Research Association, Review of Educational Research, Vol. 
XVII, No. 2 (April, 1947), p. 169. 

'Julian E. Butterworth, Improving Educational Opportunities in Rural Areas, Albany, 
N.Y.: University of the State of New York, Bulletin No. 1322, August, 1946, p. 155. 

''Walter C. Reusser and Raymond W. Wochner, School District Reorganization in 
Wyoming, School Service Bureau Bulletin, \'^ol. 4, No. 4, Laramie, Wyo.: College of 
Education, University of Wyoming, 1945, p. 35. 


trict. .\11 those who favour the county or an equivalent unit as the basic 
unit suggest the inchision in tlie county of all urban centres having less than 
a specified population or having a special status.^ 

7. Cameron- included even the largest cities when he recommended 
that in British Columbia municipal boundaries be disregarded. But, in 
eflFect, he merely added rural territory to the city; he did not include the 
cit\' in another unit. The Special Select Committee of the Manitoba Legis- 
lature recommended that towns and villages be included in, and cities 
excluded from, the larger units. Plenderleith^ recommended that New 
Bnmswick cities and towns be given the option of joining the county units 
or remaining apart. The Alabama Educational Survey Commission"^ and the 
Tennessee Survey Report^ advocated merging all school systems in each 
countv into one unit. The Arkansas Education Association*^ recommended 
incorporating all districts with fewer than 350 pupils into county rural dis- 
tricts. The Ohio School Survey Commission^ would exclude the 113 city 
and 88 village districts from the proposed 88 county units. Sandiford^ 
thought that in Ontario only those cities with populations over 30,000 or 
40,000 should be excluded from county units. Those, like Dawson^ and 
Briscoe,^° who base the size of a satisfacory unit almost entirely on popula- 
tion or on other factors which vary with it are inclined to exempt those 
cities and towns which meet the standards laid down for a satisfactory 
local school unit. So also are those who believe there should be a difference 
between the education of rural and urban children. The Michigan Public 
Education Study Commissions^ recommended that all cities of 10,000 popu- 
lation and over retain independent status. 

Population as a Basis 

8. Many students of educational administration have defined a satis- 
factory unit of local school administration in terms of population or some 
factor which varies with population, such as enrolment, school census, 

^For example, incorporated cities falling below the specified minimum population. In 
some states there are cities whose charter grants them the right to administer education. 

"Maxwell A. Cameron, op. cit. 

^Villiam A. Plenderleith et. ah, op. cit. 

^Alabama Educational Survey Commission, Public Education in Alabama, Washing- 
ton, D.C.: American Council on Education, 1945, pp. 224-228. 

^Burgin E. Dossett, Public Education in Tennessee (summary), Tennessee Depart- 
ment of Education, 1946, p. 76. 

'Arkansas Education Association, op. cit. 

"Thomas C. Holy, op. cit. 

^Peter Sandiford, op. cit. 

''Howard A. Dawson, Satisfactory Local School Units, NashviUe: Division of Surveys 
and Field Studies, George Peabody College for Teachers, 1934. 
"A. O. Briscoe, Unpublished Thesis. 

"Michigan Public Education Study Commission, The Improvement of Public Edu- 
cation in Michigan, Ch. 8, "Local Administrative Structure", Lansing: the Commission, 


average attendance, teaching units, or administrative and supervisory costs. 
Those who advocate the communit)'-t)'pe district base their calculations on 
what they consider to be a population sufficient to support a secondary 
school with an adequate and diversified programme. They establish what 
tliey believe to be the minimum size of such a secondary school and, from 
a study of the percentage of the population which attends secondary school, 
they determine a minimum population figure. This has been done in con- 
nection with the formation of the enlarged high school districts recently 
established in Ontario. Three hundred secondary school students (grades 
IX-XIII) was adopted as the minimum number necessary for the satisfac- 
tory operation of a modern secondary school programme, a number which 
is equivalent to a total population of approximately 8,000. Baird,^ also in 
relation to Ontario, estimated that a minimum total population of 5,000 to 
7,000 would be required for the establishment of a satisfactory school unit. 
On the other hand, those who tend to favour a unit based on an adequate 
supervisory area base their calculations on such things as the number of 
teachers that can be most satisfactorily and economically supervised as a 
unit. Dawson,- basing his calculations on the number of classrooms which 
could be most economically and efficiently supervised, claimed that a total 
of 12,000, 6,000, or 2,000 pupils enrolled in grades I to Xll-the choice de- 
pending on the type of administrative and supervisory organization de- 
sired—would be required for a satisfactory^ unit. He assumed that adminis- 
trative and supervisory costs would amount to 7.7 per cent of the total 
annual current cost of education in the unit. 

9. Briscoe^ found that a unit containing 200 or more teachers was best 
from the standpoint of economy, but that units with 70 to 80 teachers may 
provide adequate administrative and supervisory control vdth a relatively 
low percentage of current expense. 

10. Other authorities have favoured the supervisory area as the basic 
unit of administration. The National Council of Chief State School Officers^ 
favoured "the pattern that will provide educational services eflFectively and 
economically under competent professional leadership . . ." The Ontario 
Teachers' Federation^ recommended that units coincide with "areas of 
supervision". The three Prairie Provinces of Canada have used the inspec- 
torate as the basic unit in reorganization in many but by no means in all 
cases. They have tended to make the unit equivalent in size and population 
to existing inspectorates, but they have not made them coincide. The fac- 
tors of social and economic homogeneity have been taken into considera- 

'Norman B. Baird, op. cit. 

"Howard A. Dawson, op. cit. 

"A. O. Briscoe, op. cit. 

'National Council of Chief State School Officers, Reports from the Buffalo Meeting, 
reprint from "School Life", April and May, 1946. 

"Brief 169, Recommendations on Education, submitted by Tlie Ontario Teachers' 


tion, and adjustments have been made in existing inspectorates. In several 
cases, tvvo or more units compose one inspectorate, especially in sparsely 
settled areas. Similarh', in most county-unit systems in the United States 
the administrative and supervisory units coincide, though an exception 
occurs in Virginia, where several of the superintendents are the joint em- 
ployees of two or more local authorities. This latter arrangement is also 
made in New Brunswick and Nova Scotia, although in those provinces the 
superintendents are emplovees of the central authority. The trend in Can- 
ada in the formation of larger units is to give community' or municipal 
boundaries preference over supersdsory boundaries. The chief reason is, 
however, that the superintendent or inspector is almost always an appointee 
of the central rather than the local authorit\'. If the superintendent were 
an employee of the local authorit)% the size of the administrative unit 
would, to a much greater extent, be determined by the size of an adequate 
supervisory unit. 

Area as a Basis 

11. Few authorities have regarded area as a major factor determining 
the size of a satisfactory local school unit. This is probably because in most 
situations maximum and minimum limits of area are set by an adherence to 
other principles. Ontario, however, because of the extent of its unorganized 
territory, is faced with the problem of deciding upon the maximum area 
of a satisfactory local school unit. Cameron^ dealt most fully with this ques- 
tion. He stated that there are limits to largeness as well as to smallness of 
districts. He regarded the bounds of a unit comprehensible to the local 
people as the limit of largeness but pointed out that people in sparsely 
settled areas are accustomed to travelling great distances to deal with rela- 
tively minor matters. He favoured the extension of natural community 
boundaries, in such cases, to include isolated schools and as much as pos- 
sible of the unorganized portions of the province. Thus, he claimed, as 
population spread, each school-age child would find himself within the 
jurisdiction of an authority charged with responsibihty for providing him 
with school facilities. 

Sub-units of the Basic Unit 

12. Those who favour the community-type district as the basic unit of 
administration do not usually advocate sub-units. They recommend one 
authorit}' to be in charge of all phases of education within the district. Thus 
Cameron^ made no provision for administrative sub-units in British Col- 
umbia. Among those who favour the larger county-type district, opinion is 
divided on the question of sub-units. Stray er^ criticized the West Virginia 

^Max^vell A. Cameron, op. cit. 

^George D. Strayer, A Digest of a Report of a Survey of Public Education in the 
State of West Virginia, Legislative Interim Committee, State of West Virginia, 1945. 


county-unit system because it permitted no sub-units and thus prevented 
wealthier communities from providing services above the level of those 
offered by the county authorities. The Manitoba Select Committee^ recom- 
mended the retention of local boards "witli certain specific and definite 
powers". Plenderleith- recommended sub-units for New Brunswick coun- 
ties. The Research Committee of the Saskatchewan School Trustees' Asso- 
ciation^ favoured the retention of local units, and this seems to have had 
its effect on legislation. The chief reasons advanced by those advocating 
sub-units with more than nominal powers are: 

( 1 ) Local interest in and control over the schools of a community are 
necessary if decentralization of educational control is to be eflBcient. 

(2) Provision must be made so that communities may by their own efforts 
supplement the educational services made available in the larger unit 
as a whole. 

Those who have advocated the abolition of existing sub-units or the organi- 
zation of administration without sub-units have stressed efficiency as ex- 
pressed in dollars and cents rather than community pride and participation 
in education. They have tended to favour more rather than less centrali- 

Ad Hoc Boards or Municipal Councils 

13. In Canada and the United States'* ad hoc bodies have been created 
to conduct the educational affairs of local school units. Most authorities in 
both countries endorse this system. Henry and Kerwin^ are almost alone in 
favouring the operation of schools, especially in cities, as a department of 
the civil government. On the other hand, both England and Scotland have 
replaced ad hoc boards by municipal councils functioning through appointed 
education committees. No Canadian educator advocates that municipal 
councils should control education, although in one brief presented to us it 
was urged that they have greater control over educational expenditures.® 

14. From information that we have received in briefs and memoranda 
and from evidence given in public hearings we have concluded that there 
is no strong sentiment or valid argument in favour of discontinuing the 
administration of education in this province by ad hoc local education 
authorities. This conclusion has a direct bearing on local units of school 
administration, since the use of municipal councils as local education authori- 
ties would automatically fix the boundaries of units of administration. 

^Report of the Special Select Committee of the Manitoba Legislative Assembly on 
Education, p. 17. 

^William A. Plenderleith et ah, op. cit. 

^Schedule A of the Report of the Committee on School Administration to the Minister 
of Education for Saskatchewan, Regina: King's Printer, 1940, p. 65. 

*With the exception of St. Paul, Minn., and Chattanooga, Tenn. 

'^^Nelson B. Henry and Jerome G. Kcrwin, Schools and City Government, Chicago: 
The Universit)' of Chicago Press, 1938. 

"Brief 6, Provincial Grants to Education, submitted by the Ontario Property Owners' 
Association and the Property Owners' Association of Toronto. 


15. Accordingly we recommend 

(a) that education in public and separate elementary schools, secondary 
schools, and junior colleges'^ be administered by ad hoc local edu- 
cation authorities; 

(b) that Section 44c of The Municipal Act be amended so as to remove 
from trustees of improvement districts all their powers and duties 
with respect to the administration of education except those nor- 
mally exercised by municipal authorities. 

Elected or Appointed Boards 

16. Another problem is whether education authorities should be elected 
or appointed. A decision must be made on this point before we can establish 
the criteria upon which to base our recommendations concerning the size 
and nature of a local education authority. 

17. The opinion of most experts is that the best method of selecting 
local education authorities is popular election at large. This method gives 
local control of education directly to the ratepayers. Contrary to the opinion 
of those favouring the appointment of school board members, the practice 
of election does not appear to have resulted in the selection of less able 
representatives. It has been noted that local custom is a strong factor in 
determining the method of selection: people tend to be satisfied with the 
established practice, whether it is appointment or election. In Ontario both 
methods have been used; almost invariably elementary school boards have 
been elected and secondary school boards have been appointed. The 
majority of representations made to us in briefs and memoranda indicate 
that election is the method most acceptable to the people of this province. 
Traditionally, school trustees for elementary school purposes in Ontario 
have been elected, and we see no reason to change this procedure. In fact, a 
growing demand for elected boards to administer secondary education 
supports our conclusion that boards administering post-elementary education 
should also be elected. It is also our opinion that all qualified ratepayers, 
regardless of whether they are supporters of public or of separate elementary 
schools, should be eligible to vote. We recommend 

that each local education authority^ be elected by the qualified rate- 
payers who support any of the schools administered by it. 

Criteria for the Nature and Size of the 
Local Unit of School Administration 

18. As a result of our study of local units of school administration in 
this and other countries, consideration of suggestions in briefs and memo- 
randa presented to us, and our analysis of the requirements of this province, 
we have set up certain criteria for the nature and size of local units of 

'Except junior colleges of education. 

^Vith the exception of the public school board of a school section fonned under 
Section 62a of The Public Schools Act. 


school administration in Ontario. Some of these criteria relate to local 
education authorities, since the nature and size of a unit may depend upon 
the type of board by which it is administered. 

Criterion 1: the unit of administration must be large enough to pro- 
vide A sufficient number of pupils to warrant at least 
one secondary school offering a sxjfficiently diversified 
programme to provide for each pupil a course suitable 
to his needs. 

19. This is necessary if secondary education is to be made, as far as 
possible, equally available to all children. Compulsory attendance until age 
16 makes it necessary that there be available to each pupil a course of 
value to him whatever his aptitudes or ultimate goal. Our investigation 
leads us to conclude that a properly diversified programme cannot be 
operated eflficiently in a secondary school with an enrolment of less than 
300 pupils. 

Criterion 2: the unit of administration should, where possible, be large 


20. An enrolment of at least 300 pupils in a junior college is considered 
to be the minimum for efficient operation. Generally speaking, an adminis- 
trative unit large enough to provide this number would have 900 pupils 
enrolled in secondary schools. There might well be parts of the province 
where it would be impossible to satisfy this requirement without sacrificing 
something else of equal importance. In these cases, some other arrangement, 
possibly the joint operation of one junior college for two or more units, 
might be made. 

Criterion 3: the unit of administration should be large enough to 


21. When units are smaller than an adequate supervisory area (usually 
considered to consist of 100 classrooms), local control of supervision can 
be achieved only by the joint employment of supervisors by several boards 
or by the creation of intermediate units and authorities for purposes of 

Criterion 4: the unit of administration should be large enough to 


22. To give effect to our recommendation that much of the control of the 
interna be decentralized, units of administration must be large enough in 
terms of pupils enrolled so that the administering board would have 
responsibilities important enough to attract to its membership men and 
women of outstanding worth, and have the resources to employ suflBciently 
qualified administrative, supervisory, and instructional personnel. It has 



been claimed^ that, iii some decentralized systems, larger units of adminis- 
tration should be adopted in order to stop the trend toward centralization 
of the interna. We believe that Ontario must adopt them if important 
aspects of administration are to be decentralized, since broad powers cannot 
be si\'en to some 4,000 local authorities in charo;e of small units. In order 
that the possibility of the development of an unbalanced programme may 
be avoided, such powers should be delegated with the proviso that major 
local decisions are subject to the approval of the Minister of Education. 
Criterion 5: the number of local education authorities with which 


23. In 1948 there were 4,532 units of administration in the Province of 
Ontario. Since the board of each of these in which schools were operated 
reported directly to the Department of Education, the task of the account- 
ing, statistical, and other branches was made needlessly burdensome. 
Criterion 6: the unit of administration should be large enough to 


24. Local centralization of business administration should result in con- 
siderable savings and in improved business practices. In order to operate 
economically for business administration, a unit should contain at least 
5,000 pupils, representing, in terms of total population, 30,000 to 40,000 

Criterion 7: the unit of administration should be large enough so 


25. Generally speaking, the larger the unit in geographical area the 
more diverse will be the tv^pes of communities it contains, particularly with 
regard to financial abilitv to support an adequate educational programme. 
Ideally, the entire area should be a single fiscal unit for the support of both 
elementary and post-elementary education. This is not practicable in 
Ontario. Some ratepayers who support secondary schools are separate 
elementary school supporters, and this makes it impossible to impose a 
uniform rate on all taxpayers in the unit to finance both elementary and 
secondary education. It is feasible, however, if assessments are equalized, 
to strike one uniform rate over the whole unit for the support of post- 
elementary education only and another for the support of at least a minimum 
programme in all public elementary schools. 

Criterion 8: the unit of administration should be large enough to 

^Howard A. Dawson, op. cit. 



26. The separation which has existed between elementary and secondar)' 
education in the past is largely the result of historical influences and has 
been perpetuated by the existence of Roman Catholic separate schools in 
the elementary school field. This last factor makes it impossible to con- 
centrate the entire administration in a single authority, since there must 
always be members of the authority who will function in matters relating 
to post-elementary education but not in those relating to public elementary 
education. The form of unified administration which is achieved at present 
in those cities and towns having boards of education could, however, be 
extended throughout the province. 

Criterion 9: provisions should be made to ensure that control of 


27. In order to put into practice our recommendations relating to the 
decentralization of interna and the local centralization of externa, we are 
faced with an unavoidable paradox: in order to give more real control of 
education to local authorities it is necessary to take from many small com- 
munities powers previously exercised. On the other hand, since our desire 
is to create and foster local interest in education, we must not take the 
control of education too far from the people who are most vitally concerned. 
But perhaps the loss to the small community is more apparent than real. 
In spite of the great decentralization of certain phases of education in the 
past, local interest in the school has not been generally noteworthy. In any 
case, safeguards must be provided against the tendency, resulting from the 
merging of previously independent small units into larger units, for local 
initiative to die out. Both a representative of this Commission and inde- 
pendent educational surveys have found, for example, that in some American 
states where the county is the basic school unit small communities with a 
higher-than-average ability to pay for education have in many cases con- 
tented themselves, or have been obliged to be content, with the minimum 
programme offered by the larger unit, usuall)' on a lower scale than that 
which these communities had previously been able to afford. Provision 
should be made for local deviations from, and additions to, the minimum 
programme provided by the basic unit. 

Criterion 10: the unit of administration should be formed with due 


28. Large lakes, unbridged rivers, and large expanses of unbroken forest 
are much more apt to hinder the administration of education than are countv 
or township boundaries, and due regard to such geographical factors should 
be given in forming a unit of administration. The location and condition of 


main traflBc arteries are also important. Probably of even greater importance 
is tlie strength of the community of interests. The area should be an eco- 
nomic communits'— such as a cit)-, town, or village, with its economic 
hinterland, or an area where the people earn their living from a basic 
industrv— or it should be a community in some other sense. It is not essential 
that the unit be confined to one t}'pe of communit)'; in order to satisfy 
other criteria, it may frequently be necessary to include several "communi- 
ties" in one unit. 
Criterion 11: the unit of administration should, other criterl\ being 


29. So long as the municipalitv shares in the responsibility for the edu- 
cational programme in some such way as through the financing of education, 
it is obviouslv advantageous that the boundaries of the school unit and of 
the municipality' should coincide. 

Criterion 12: the unit of administration should be large enough so 


30. When a unit of administration is based on a population sufficient 
onlv to provide one satisfactory school, the unit itself becomes unsatisfactory 
as soon as there is a substantial increase or decrease in the number of 
pupils. It becomes necessary for the central authority or some intermediate 
education authorit)'^ to provide remedial action, which may be long delayed 
and, in some cases, held up by appeals. It is obviously important for the 
board of a unit of administration to place its schools strategically so as best 
to serve the needs of the unit, and to consider the possibility of change. 
Criterion 13: the bount)aries of units of adaiinistration should be so 


31. This is desirable from both an ideal and a practical point of view. 
Criterion 14: the unit of administration should inclltde all natural 

CATED within rrs boundaries. 

32. opinion is divided as to whether cities should be included in larger 
units of administration. There are few \'alid arguments favouring the in- 
clusion of cities with populations greater than 75,000. There are arguments 
both for and against the inclusion of cities with a smaller population. Of the 
reasons advanced in favour of forming cities with less than 75,000 popula- 
tion into independent units for both post-elementary and public elementary 
education, the most important are as follows: 

(1) All cities having 1,200 or more pupils enrolled in grades VII-XIII 
^Such as the countv' or township council, in Ontario. 


inclusive, satisfy all our criteria and hence can be considered as satis- 
factory units for public elementary and post-elementary education. 

(2) For generations cities in Ontario have been functioning satisfactorily 
as units for the administration of both public elementary and post- 
elementary education. 

(3) In only two cases would the granting of independent status to a city 
in Ontario result in the county or district in which it is located being 
too small, from the point of view of the number of pupils enrolled, to 
operate as a satisfactory post-elementary school unit. 

( 4 ) If all cities, counties, and districts of the province are listed in descend- 
ing order according to the number of post-elementary school pupils 
enrolled in 1947, the cities are near the top of the list. It is difficult to 
justify withholding independent status from cities which have more 
pupils enrolled than have many of the counties and districts. 

Criterion 15: every part of the province should be included in some unit 

OF SCHOOL administration. 

33. Under a system of compulsory school attendance, the education of 
each child, no matter where he resides in the province, should be the 
responsibility of some authority charged with the provision of educational 

Criterion 16: the unit of administration should be large enough so 


34. At present the great majority of administrative units are too small 
to warrant the employment of the personnel necessary for the administration 
of such services as special subject supervision, library service, audio-visual 
aids, the education of atypical children, and attendance. The results have 
been as follows: only larger urban communities have provided such ser- 
vices; where an attempt has been made to provide such services in smaller 
units, co-operation among a large number of small independent authorities 
has often been difficult to achieve; and there has been a tendency to central- 
ize the administration of such services under the central authority. 
Criterion 17: a local education authority must be entirely composed of 


35. In Ontario this principle is operative at present only with respect 
to authorities administering public or separate schools. If fully applied, it 
would mean that all ratepayers of the unit, not otherwise disqualified, would 
be eligible to vote at the election of members of the post-elementary school 
authority, regardless of whether they were supporters of public or separate 
schools in the elementary school field. This appears to be the equitable way 
of selecting such boards. 

Criterion 18: members of a local education authority who are sup- 
porters OF separate schools must have no voice in the 



36. The only problem in this connection will be found where one local 
education authority' administers both post-elementary education and public 
elementarv education. Where a board of education now operates in a unit 
in which a separate school exists, those members^ of the board who are 
separate school supporters are precluded by law from taking part in pro- 
ceedings of the board which relate exclusively to public elementary schools. 
They do, however, take part in those proceedings of the board which con- 
cern matters common to public elementary and post-elementary education, 
such as the appointment and salary of a director of education, a business 
administrator, and other officials who have joint jurisdiction over post- 
elementary and public elementary schools. They also take part in discus- 
sions relating to the provision of special services for both types of schools. 
Since The Boards of Education Act requires the elected members of a board 
of education to be public school ratepayers, and since the number of ap- 
pointed separate school representatives is limited, there is no possibility of 
the majority of the board being separate school supporters. This situation 
might arise, however, if members of boards of education were not required 
to be public school supporters and all ratepayers who support post-ele- 
mentary schools were eligible to vote, as will be the case if our recom- 
mendation is implemented. For this reason, we feel that the principle 
followed before 1948- should remain in force. The consent of the public 
school ratepayers or their elected representatives should be required for the 
formation of a board of education in which separate school representatives 
have a voice in the appointment of officials, as mentioned above, and in the 
conduct of matters concerning both types of schools. This is tantamount 
to saving that the establishment of such boards of education cannot be 
made mandatory by legislation; it can only be effected through voluntary 
action on the part of the public school supporters concerned. 

Criterion 19: separate school corporations must retain their statutory 


37. The discussion leading to the decision embodied in this criterion 
may be found in the chapters relating to separate schools. 

Criterion 20: any plan of reorganization recommended should be 


^Separate school representatives are appointed. 

-Betw'een 1911 and 1948, the formation of a municipal board of education was de- 
pendent upon a majority vote, favourable to it, of the public school ratepayers of the 
unit concerned. See Chapter VIII. 


Alternative Plans for the Reorganization of Local School Units 

38. Although Criteria 17, 18, and 19 relate directly to local education 
authorities rather than to local units of administration, they are important 
in determining: the nature of the local unit of school administration. The 
situation in Ontario with respect to the nature of the local unit, owing to 
the existence of two types of publicly supported elementary schools, makes 
it impossible to disregard them. Elsewhere, the problem is relatively simple, 
namely, to determine the size and nature of the most satisfactory local unit 
for the administration of all phases of publicly supported education below 
the university level. In this pro\ince the problem is complicated by the 
fact that all ratepayers are supporters of post-elementary schools, but not 
all are supporters of public elementary schools. 

39. Of the 20 criteria we have formulated, only 4 contain the word 
"must"— 1, 17, 18, and 19; in the others "should" is used. The present units 
of administration in the province satisfy only 2 of the 4 criteria considered 
"musts". Not even all of the newly formed high school districts are large 
enough to warrant the establishment of a 300-pupil secondary school 
(Criterion 1), and only a small minority of the boards administering post- 
elementary education are entirely selected at elections at which all the 
qualified ratepayers who support anv one type of school administered by 
them are eligible to vote (Criterion 17). Separate school corporations are 
completely independent of any other local education authority (Criterion 
19), and separate school supporters who are members of boards of educa- 
tion have no voice in the conduct of public elementary schools except in 
matters common to public and post-elementary schools and then only when 
the public school ratepavers or their representatives have voted on the 
formation of a board of education.^ 

40. The fact that Criterion 18 is a "must" makes it impossible to re- 
commend the mandatory establishment of units for the administration of 
both public elementary and post-elementary education by a single local 
authority (Criterion 8). To permit achievement of a unified administration 
of elementary and post-elementarv education, we later recommend, in ac- 
cordance with our criteria, the mandatory establishment of distinct units of 
administration for post-elementary and public elementary education and a 
provision for unification through ^ oluntary action of the public school rate- 
payers concerned. 

41. A satisfactory unit of administration for post-elementary education 
might be sought in the enlarged high school districts formed in the pro- 
vince during the past five years. Since they were formed on the basis of the 
operation of a secondary school with a minimum of 300 pupils enrolled, 

'Except in the case of boards of education established by county councils since 1948, 
and those established by municipal councils since 1949. 



thev satisfy Criterion 1. In most cases, however, Criterion 2, relating to 
junior colleges, is not satisfied, nor is 3, relating to supervision. Criterion 
5 is partially satisfied, as are 7. 9, 10, 13, and 14; but Criteria 2, 3, 4, 6, 8, 
11, 12, 15, and 16 are not. The latter group of criteria seems to make 
necessary some unit approximating in size the average Ontario county. 
This suggests that the counties, cities, and territorial districts might be the 
basic units for the administration of post-elementary education. They will 
satisfy the first sixteen criteria with the possible exception of 10 and 13. 
Another alternative is to form, on the basis set out in Criterion 10, and 
without regard to municipal boundaries, large high school districts approxi- 
mating the size of a county. This will not, however, satisfy Criterion 11. 

42. In spite of these difficulties, it is possible to establish units- 
modified cities, counties, and territorial districts— which will satisfy all the 
criteria for suitable units for the administration of post-elementary edu- 
cation, namely, the first sixteen, excepting Criterion 8. Municipal boundaries 
of cities, counties, and districts will be accepted when they do not cut 
across natural community lines, transportation routes, and geographical 
conformations; in other cases they will be modified to conform to these 
factors. Such units will also be large enough to function as areas of super- 
vision for elementar}' school purposes and will permit co-operation between 
post-elementar\' and public elementary authorities— apparently the only 
acceptable way in which a unified system can be achieved in this province 
(Criterion 8). 

43. In seeking to determine the proper nature and size of units for the 
administration of public elementary education, we considered the advis- 
ability of having units conterminous with those for post-elementary edu- 
cation. If this were done, Criteria 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, and 16 
would be satisfied, and a voluntary union of the administration of post- 
elementary and public elementary education would be facilitated, thus sat- 
isfying Criterion 8. However, Criterion 9, relating to local control, would 
be seriously violated, especially in relation to towns and larger villages. 
The concept of community (Criterion 10), an important consideration in 
the elementar\7 school field, would also remain unsatisfied. Many of the 
other criteria can be satisfied bv public elementary units not as large as 
the county or district. Our investigations indicate that the township school 
area plan is not fully satisfactory for the administration of public elemen- 
tary education: the areas as at present organized are frequently too small; 
and large "pockets" in different parts of the province are not organized 
into larger units. We believe that these weaknesses will be remedied if 
each of the larger units for post-elementary education, which we later re- 
commend be established, is sub-divided into large units for the adminis- 
tration of public elementary education. 


Recommendations Relating to Local Units of School Administration 
Post-elementary Education 

44. We recommend 

(a) that the entire province be divided by the Minister into units for 
the administration of post-elementary education; 

(b) that each such unit be known as a "region"; 

(c) that, subject to the modifications outlined below, the boundaries of 
regions approximate those of existing cities, counties, and territorial 

45. The power to determine the types and method of establishment of 
local units of school administration rests ultimately with the Legislature; 
the powers relating to the establishment, disestablishment, and alteration 
of boundaries of school units now exercised by county and township 
councils are deleo;ated to them bv Acts of the Legislature and can be in- 
creased, decreased, or abolished bv further legislation. There would, there- 
fore, be no constitutional bar to the determination of the boundaries of 
regions bv the Legislature or by the Minister. But it does not appear to us 
that there is much to be gained by such a method of establishment. We 
are confident that more satisfactory results can be attained if the boundaries 
of regions are determined locally, so long as certain principles, based on 
our criteria, are followed and the approval of the Minister is obtained. 

46. We therefore recommend 

(a) that a "consultative committee" be constituted in each city, admin- 
istrative county, and territorial district; 

(b) that each city consultative committee be composed of appointees 
of the city council and appointees of the Minister; 

(c) that each county consultative committee be composed of appointees 
of the county council— and of the council of each separated town 
within the county, where such exist— and appointees of the Minister; 

(d) that each district consultative committee be composed of appointees 
of the councils of those towns, villages, and organized townships 
having a popidation of 1,000 or over, and appointees of the Minister 
—some of whom should be representative of the smaller munici- 
palities, unorganized townships, and unsurveyed territory; 

(e) that each considtative committee be required to confer with the 
committee of each of the contiguous cities, counties, and districts 
to determine by mutual agreement, in the light of the instructions 
given below, the most satisfactory boundaries for the region based 
on the city, county, or district concerned; to determine the division 
of the proposed region into large units to be known as "public 
school areas',^ for the administration of public elementary schools; 
and to submit their recommendations to the Minister of Education. 

*See the section of this chapter immediatelv following. 


47. Each consultative committee, after consultation with other com- 
mittees, will have to consider the following possibilities and recommend 
one or more of them: 

(1) That the boundaries of the region coincide with those of the city, 
countv', or territorial district. 

(2) That all, a part, or parts of the city, county, or district be included in 
another region or regions. 

(3) That all, a part, or parts of another city or cities, county or counties, 
or district or districts be added to the city, county, or district con- 
cerned to form one region. 

Most consultative committees, especially those in counties and districts, will 
probably recommend a combination of the second and third possibilities. 
Thus, a consultative committee might recommend that part of one ad- 
joining county or district be included in its region by agreement, and 
similarly that a part of the territory' of its county or district be incorporated 
in the region based on an adjoining city, county, or district. 

48. We further recommend 

that, in recommending the boundaries of regions, consultative com- 
mittees he guided by the following principles: 

(a) each region should have a total prospective annual post-elementary 
school enrolment of 1,200 pupils; 

(b) if a county or district is too small to provide a prospective annual 
enrolment of 1,200 post-elementary school pupils, it should be 
joined with a neighbouring city, county, or district to form one 
region, unless arrangements can be made to incorporate sufficient 
territory of neighbouring counties or districts to bring the total 
prospective annual enrolment of post-elementary school pupils 
up to the minimum; 

(c) if a county or district is too small to provide the minimum prospec- 
tive post-elementary school enrolment, and, being geographically 
isolated,^ cannot be pined with neighbouring cities, counties, or 
districts, it might be established as a region; 

( d ) counties and territorial districts having a prospective annual enrol- 
ment of 6,000 or more post-elementary school pupils and consist- 
ing of at least two distinct large communities may be formed, 
subject to other criteria being satisfied, into two or more regions; 

(e) city, county, district, and other municipal boundaries should be 
disregarded if a strict adherence to them would mean the division 
of a community, the splitting of natural attendance areas, or dis- 
regard for geographical barriers or transportation routes; 

(/) public meetings should be called by consultative committees for 
discussion of the proposed boundaries of regions and public school 

^E.g. Prince Edward County and Rainy River District. 


49. In our opinion, only in the case of York County would a recom- 
mendation for division into more than one region be warranted. It might 
be possible to make the whole county, exclusive of the city of Toronto, one 
region; but there is a great difference between the almost completely urban 
southern half of the county and the completely rural northern half. Negoti- 
ations for the formation of a metropolitan area or county in the Toronto 
area may solve this problem by making Toronto and its 12 surrounding 
municipalities one unit for educational purposes.^ In this case the re- 
mainder of the county should, of course, form one region. If, however, no 
changes in municipal organization are made in the Toronto area, there are 
three possibilities: the Toronto City Region might include the 12 surround- 
ing municipalities, which, if the two consultative committees concerned 
so recommend, could remain as units for the administration of public ele- 
mentary education; the 12 suburban municipalities might form one educa- 
tional region; or York County might be divided into 5 regions, somewhat 
as follows : ( 1 ) the York Township Region, composed of York Township; 
(2) the West York Region, composed of Etobicoke Township, Swansea, 
Mimico, New Toronto, and Long Branch; (3) the North York Region, 
composed of North York Township, Weston, and Forest Hill Village; (4) 
the East York Region, composed of East York Township, Leaside, and that 
part of Scarborough Township included in the present Scarborough high 
school district; and ( 5 ) the York Rural Region, composed of the remainder 
of the county. Each of these divisions would be an adequate region on the 
basis of the criteria which we have previously enunciated and would stand 
well up in the list of all the regions in the province as far as school enrol- 
ment is concerned. However, it is doubtful whether this would be the best 
solution of the difficulties of financing education under which these munici- 
palities at present labour. In our opinion the first suggestion, that Toronto 
and the surrounding 12 municipalities be organized as one region for post- 
elementary school purposes, is the best. 

50. Although the chief functions of city, county, and district consulta- 
tive committees will be discharged when regions and public school areas 
are formed, there will continue to be a need for consultative bodies of 
some kind to advise municipal and county councils and local education 
authorities on matters of mutual concern. Such bodies, we feel, should be 
constituted on a regional rather than on a city, county, or district basis. 
We therefore recommend 

that, following the formation of regions and public school areas, there 
be appointed regional constdtative committees, in such manner as 
the Legislature mat/ determine but including appointees of the Minister 
and of local government authorities and local education authorities 

'In making these observations we are not expressing any opinion as to the merits or 
demerits of the present proposals for amalgamation for municipal purposes. 


having jurisdiction within the region; and that it be the duty of each 
committee to make recommendations on specific problems submitted to 
it by a regional board, a public school board, a separate school board, 
or a municipal or county council. 

51. We realize that great changes will occur in population and in means 
and routes of transportation, and we feel that the structure of adminis- 
trative units must be elastic enough to permit adaptations made necessary 
by such changes. We therefore recommend 

(a) that, after a period of five years has elapsed and thereafter every 
ten years, boundaries of regions be subject to revision by the 
Minister, following recommendation by regional consultative com- 

(b) that, at any time, following a favourable vote of the ratepayers in 
each region on a plebiscite held for the purpose, any two or more 
regions may be constituted by the Minister as a single region to be 
operated under the type of administrative .organization determined 
by the vote of the ratepayers at the time of the plebiscite. 

Public Elementary Education 

52. Many factors must be considered in determining the type of unit 
most suitable for the administration of pubhc elementary schools. The unit 
should be understandable to the local people as a "community" in terms 
of economic activities, trade centres, lines of highway communication, and 
municipal boundaries. It must have suflBcient resources to enable it to 
finance its own capital expenditures, and its tax base should be broad 
enough to allow for minor inequalities in ability to pay for education. 
Every part of the province where the operation of a school is feasible 
should be included in some elementary school unit. Cities should continue 
to be units for the administration of public elementary schools, as should 
larger towns and villages. Smaller towns and villages may form the nuclei 
of such units, especially where they are the natural community centres for 
surrounding rural territory. 

53. We feel, however, that local interest in, and control of, elementary 
education are so important that they outweigh purely administrative con- 
venience. There are disadvantages in removing the control of its school 
from even the smallest community. This is especially true of those rural 
school sections which, either because of greater wealth or greater interest, 
have provided in the past a programme above the average in terms of quali- 
fications of teachers, accommodation, equipment, and special services. Al- 
though for the general good of the larger community such sections should 
rightly become parts of larger units for administrative purposes, we believe 
that they should, at the same time, retain their identity as sub-units with 
at least advisory powers. 


54. We recommend 

(a) that, for public elementary school purposes, each region be divided 
into units to be known as public school areas; 

(b) that, in recommending the boundaries of public school areas, con- 
sultative committees be guided by the following principles: 

(i) a region whose boundaries coincide with those of a city should 
be one public school area; 

(ii) a region which consists of a city and all or part of the sur- 
rounding county or territorial district should be one public 
school area, or be divided into two or more public school areas 
one of which should be the city proper; 

(iii) in all regions 

( 1 ) towns and villages with population of at least 3,000 may 
be constituted public school areas; 

(2) other parts of such regions should be formed into public 
school areas each with a minimum area of 80 square miles 
and, except with the permission of the Minister, an enrol- 
ment of at least 150 public elementary school pupils; 

(c) that from time to time boundaries of public school areas be subject 
to revision by the Minister, following recommendation by regional 
consultative committees. 



Types of Local Education Authorities For Ontario 

1. We have recommended that each local education authority be an 
ad hoc body elected by ratepayers who support any type of school operated 
by it. All possibilities were canvassed to find a formula by which in any 
given area all forms of publicly supported education below the university 
level might be administered by a board of education; but we found no 
means acceptable to the members of the Commission generally of inte- 
grating separate schools into such an organization. The only alternative 
was to seek a means whereby post-elementary and public elementary edu- 
cation in a region might, with the consent of the public school ratepayers, 
be co-ordinated under a board of education. 

2. In most city regions public school ratepayers will wish to continue 
a co-ordinated administration of public elementary and post-elementary 
education. If this is to be possible, provision must be made for a board 
with full jurisdiction over public elementary and post-elementary educa- 
tion. However, since this would mean the discontinuance of public school 
boards, such a type of administration would not be acceptable in most of 
the county and territorial district regions. The most satisfactory arrange- 
ment would seem to be to assign to the authority in charge of post-ele- 
mentary education certain powers relative to matters of common concern 
to all public school boards of the region. Thus, the region would become 
the basic unit for post-elementary education and an intermediate unit 
for public elementary education; and public school areas would remain 
the basic units for public elementary education. But in all regions, city or 
otherwise, a particular type of administrative organization should be insti- 
tuted only after the public school ratepayers of the region have indicated 
that they favour it. For those regions where neither of these alternatives 
is desired, recourse must be had to two types of boards, independent of 
each other: one for the administration of public elementary education; 
and the other for the administration of post-elementary education. 



3. We recommend 

that, at the time of the first municipal election following establishment 
of the boundaries of a region, public school ratepayers vote on a plebi- 
scite to select from among the following the type of administration 
desired: (1) Plan A, Regional Board of Education (Urban Type); (2) 
Plan B, Regional Board of Education (Rural Type); (3) Plan C, Autono- 
mous^ Post-elementary School Boards and Public School Boards. 

Plan A. Regional Board of Education (Urban Type) 

4. We recommend 

that, where public school ratepayers of a region select Plan A as the 
desired type of administrative organization, one "regional board of edu- 
cation" Imve jurisdiction in the region, subject to the Acts and regula- 
tions, over all matters relating to the local administration of public 
elementary and post-elementary education. 

5. Under Plan A the organization would be similar to that of municipal 
boards of education which have been established in many cities of the 
province. It may reasonably be expected that most city regions and some 
of the smaller county or district regions will adopt this plan. It can be 
adapted to satisfy all the criteria we have laid down for a satisfactory unit 
of administration for all types of schools below the university level, with 
the exception of separate schools. Such a regional board of education 
should be qualified to assume responsibilit)^, subject to the approval of the 
Minister, for greater control over the externa and interna of education. 

Plan B. Regional Board of Education (Rural Type) 

6. We recommend 

(a) that, where public school ratepayers of a region select Plan B as 
the desired type of administrative organization, one "regional board 
of education" have jurisdiction in the region, subject to the Acts 
and regulations, over all matters connected with the local admin- 
istration of post-elementary education and over certain matters 
hereinafter specified relating to the administration of public ele- 
mentary education; 

[b) that, for each public school area of the region, a local education 
authority, to be known as a "public school board", have jurisdiction 
over those matters relating to the local administration of public 
elementary education not assigned to the regional board of edu- 

1. The essential feature of this plan is that public school boards in the 
region will have authority over those matters relating to the local admin- 

^" Autonomous" as used in this report denotes that a local education authority is in- 
dependent of other local education authorities. 


istration of public elementary education not assigned to the regional board 
of education. Although the plan is designed to meet in particular the needs 
of rural areas, some city regions may wish to operate their schools under 
this t^-pe of administrative organization. 

Plan C. Autonomous Post-Elementary School Boards and Public 
School Boards 

8. We recommend 

( a ) that, where public school ratepayers of a region select Plan C as the 
desired type of administrative organization, one "regional post- 
elementary school board" have jurisdiction in the region, subject 
to the Acts and regulations, over all mdtters relating to the local 
administration of post-elementary education; 

(b) that, in each public school area of the region, a "public school 
board" liave jurisdiction, subject to the Acts and regulations, over 
all matters relating to public elementary education. 

9. Each of the three plans satisfies Criteria 17, 18, and 19 as outlined 
in the preceding chapter. As a type of administrative organization, Plan C 
leaves much to be desired. Judged on the basis of criteria generally accepted 
as valid, its chief disadvantages are as follows: 

( 1 ) It means complete separation of the administration of elementary and 
post-elementary education at the local level. 

(2) Decentralization in the control of the interna of education on a satis- 
factory basis is more diflBcult to achieve. 

(3) Employment of a local director of education and staflF for the super- 
vision of all public elementary and post-elementary schools in a region 
is impracticable. 

(4) Local centralization of business administration under a locally ap- 
pointed business administrator and staff for all public elementary and 
post-elementary schools of a region cannot be attained. 

( 5 ) Establishment within a region of a minimum programme of services for 
all public elementary schools and the distribution of financial sup- 
port in such a way that the burden falls equally on all public school 
supporters are impossible. 

(6) Regional administration of special services for both public elementary 
and post-elementary schools and the co-ordination of transportation 
systems within a region can be achieved only through agreements 
among a number of local authorities. 

We do not favour Plan C. It is submitted only because we believe that 
under the conditions existing in this province it is impossible to limit the 
choice to Plans A and B. It is our hope that the educational advantao;es of 
Plans A and B will influence public school supporters to adopt, where cir- 
cumstances permit, one of these plans. 


Powers and Duties of Local Education Authorities in Ontario 
Under the Proposed Reorganization 

10. In considering the distribution of powers as between the central 
authority, the regional authority, and the pubHc school authority, our aim 
has been to achieve, at the provincial level, as much decentralization as is 
consonant with an articulated provincial system, and, at the local level, 
as much centralization as is consonant with the maintenance of local inter- 
est. Our recommendations are formulated with these ends in view. 

11. For those regions in which Plan C has been selected, we recommend 
(a) that with reference to post-eleinentary education, a regional post- 
elementary school board exercise the following powers and dis- 
charge the following duties: 

(i) provide a sufficient number of schools for the education in 
secondary schools of all young persons between ages 12 and 
16 for whose education it is responsible; 

(ii) take the necessary steps to assure a reasonable equity of op- 
portunity in so far as availability of secondary school facilities 
is concerned; 

(iii) provide a sufficient number of junior colleges, or junior col- 
lege departments in conjunctioti with secondary schools, of- 
fering two-year courses in university-preparatory and voca- 
tional education for all young persons resident in the region 
who have passed junior college entrance examinations and 
who are desirous of pursuing such courses; 

(iv) make such two-year courses available on a reasonable basis 

of equality for all students entitled to attend them; 
(v) provide, either in a junior college maintained by it, or by 
arrangement, in a junior college in some other region, suffi- 
cient places for students in the third year of junior college 
to accommodate all those young persons who are 

( 1 ) qualified for admission to and desirous of pursuing such 
a course; 

(2) willing and able where necessary to pay their travelling 
expenses to and from, or board and lodging at, the 
centre where the junior college is located;"^ and 

(3) willing and able to pay such resident or non-resident 
tuition fees as the board concerned may determine, sub- 
ject to the approval of the Minister,^ 

(vi) appoint, transfer, and dismiss or accept the resignation of a 
secretary-treasurer and other personnel necessary for the ad- 
ministration of post-elementary education in the region; 

'Subject to the provision of a system of generous scholarships and bursaries sufiBcient 
to enable deserving students to attend third-year junior college courses. 



(vii) locate, finance {subject to the approval of the local govern- 
ment authorities^ concerned), construct, and maintain sec- 
ondary schools and junior colleges and other buildings for 
school purposes; 

(viii) delimit attendance areas for post-elementary education, and 
alter the boundaries of such areas from time to time as de- 
manded by circumstances; 

(ix) appoint, transfer, and dismiss or accept the resignation of 

members of the staffs of post-elementary schools; 
(x) adapt, subject to the approval of the Minister, the provincial 
curriculum for post-elementary schools to meet the particular 
needs of the region; 

(xi) where necessanj, provide transportation, subsistence allow- 
ances or dormitories; and pay non-resident fees on behalf of 
post-elementary school students, with the exception of those 
in third year of junior college; 

(xii) provide, at its discretion, special services, such as 

( 1 ) audio-visual aids, 

(2) library service, 

(3) health services in conjunction with other agencies, 

(4) art and music supervision, 

(5) part-time and adult education, and 

(6) cafeterias or facilities for school lunches; 

(xiii) appoint, transfer, and dismiss or accept the resignation of 

attendance officers and visiting teachers,^ 
(xiv) apply for general legislative grants; and requisition from the 
local government bodies^' concerned the remaining sums 
necessary to finance the post-elementary school programme, 
or, in unorganized townships and unsurveyed territory, levy 
and raise such sums by a uniform rate based on equalized 
(xv) perform such other duties and enjoy such other powers as 
may from time to time be delegated to it by the Minister; 
(b) that, with respect to public elementary education, each public 
school board exercise the following powers and discharge the fol- 
lowing duties: 

(i) appoint, transfer, and dismiss or accept the resignation of 

teachers in the public schools of its area; 
(ii) apply for general legislative grants; and requisition from the 

'See subsequent paragraphs of this chapter. 
'See Chapter XII. 

^See subsequent paragraphs of this chapter. 

'In unorganized townships and unsurveyed territory, school boards should be granted 
taxing powers. 


local government bodies concerned^ the remaining sums neces- 
sary to finance the programme of public elementary educa- 
tion, or, in unorganized townships and unsurveyed territory, 
levy and raise such sums by a uniform rate based on an 
equalized assessment;- 
(iii) determine the boundaries of attendance areas within the 
public school area, and alter them from time to time as con- 
ditions demand; 
(iv) where deemed advisable, make arrangements for pupils to 

attend schools in neighbouring public school areas; 
(v) locate, finance (subject to the approval of the local govern- 
ment authorities^ concerned), construct, maintain, and close 
schools; or establish central schools and other buildings for 
school purposes; 
(vi) adapt, subject to the approval of the Minister, the provincial 
curriculum for elementary schools to meet the special needs 
of the area; 
(vii) appoint, transfer, dismiss or accept the resignation of ad- 
ministrative and clerical staff and other personnel; 
(viii) perform such other duties and enjoy such other powers as 
may from time to time be delegated to it by the Minister. 
12. For those regions in which Plan A has been selected, we recommend 
that a regional board of education (urban type) exercise all the powers 
and duties of a regional post-elementary school board and of a public 
school board as outlined in the preceding paragraph and, in addition, 
the following powers and duties: 

(i) appoint, subject to the approval of the Minister, a regional 
director of education,'^ a business administrator,^ and assistant 
directors,'^ to be charged with the general supervision and 
administration of education in the post-elementary and pub- 
lic elementary schools of the region; 
(ii) submit for the Ministers approval, on the recommendation 
of the regional director, curricula, courses of study, and text- 
books for all regional schools, based on the required pro- 
vincial curriculum and list of approved texts; 
(iii) supervise instruction in the public elementary and secondary 

schools of the region; 
(iv) provide, at its discretion, additional special services and co- 
ordinate special services in post-elementary and public ele- 
mentary schools. 

^See subsequent paragraphs of this chapter. 

■In unorganized townships and unsurveyed territor\-, school boards should be granted 
taxing powers. 

'See subsequent paragraphs of this chapter. 
•See Chapter XIII. 


13. For those regions in which Plan B has been selected, we recommend 
(a) tlwt a regional board of education {rural type) exercise the powers 
and discharge the duties relating to post-elementary education out- 
lined in paragraph 11 for a regional post-elementary school board 
and, in addition, exercise the following powers and discharge the 
following duties: 

(i) appoint, subject to the approval of the Minister, a regional 
director of education, a business administrator, and assistant 
directors, to be charged with the administration and general 
supervision of education in the post-elementary and public 
elementary schools of the region; 
(ii) submit for the Ministers approval, on the recommendation 
of the regional director, curricula, courses of study, and text- 
books for all regional post-elementary and public elementary 
schools, based on the required provincial minimum cur- 
ricidum and list of approved texts; 
(iii) provide, at its discretion, additional special services and co- 
ordinate special services in post-elementary and public ele- 
mentary schools; 
(iv) adopt, in consultation with public school boards, a regional 
minimum programme to be offered by every public elemen- 
tary school in the region and financed by a common tax rate, 
based on an equalized assessment, on all public school rate- 
payers in the region; 
(v) provide, at the request and at the expense of the public 
school area concerned, transportation of public elementary 
school pupils in excess of that provided for in the regional 
minimum programme; 
(vi) approve or send back for revision all public elementary 
school budgets, and prepare the regional public elementary 
school budget and the post-elementary school budget;^ 
(vii) apply for general legislative grants; and requisition from the 
municipalities forming part of the region the remaining sums 
necessary to meet the budgets of the board, or, in unorgan- 
ized townships and unsurveyed territory, levy and raise such 
sums by a uniform rate based on equalized assessment; 
(viii) advise public school boards on the procedure to be followed 
in having debentures issued on their behalf; 
(ix) record all appoinfmrnts, dismissals, resignations, and trans- 
fers of teachers and other personnel in the public school areas 
of the region; 

^The latter will cover the full cost of post-elementar\' education, including a due 
proportion of the cost of special services, administration, and supervision; and, in addi- 
tion, the full cost of enforcing compulsory school attendance in the publich- supported 
schools of the region (see Chapter XII). 


(x) appoint, tratisfer, and dismiss or accept the resignation of 
attendance officers and visiting teachers;^ 
(b) that the public school hoard of a public school area operating under 
a regional board of education (rural type) exercise the following 
powers and discharge the following duties: 

(i) appoint, transfer, and discharge or accept the resignation of 
teachers in public elementanj schools, on the recommendat- 
tion of the regional director, and report appointments, trans- 
fers, dismissals, and resignations to the regional board; 
(ii) prepare an annual budget, based on the minimum pro- 
gramme accepted by the regional board, and submit it to the 
regional board for approval and financing; 
(iii) prepare, and submit to the regional board for financing in 
such a way as to achieve a common tax rate based on an 
equalized assessment for all public school supporters of its 
public school area, a supplementary budget to provide for 
expenditures in excess of the minimum programme approved 
by the regional board on behalf of items such as 

( 1 ) salaries in excess of those stipulated in the regional basic 
salary schedule; 

(2) more teachers than the number of pupils in average 
daily attendance would warrant under the teacher-pupil 
ratio approved by the regional board; 

(3) additional teachers of special subjects; 

(4) additional equipment; 

(5) nursery schools and kindergartens not provided for in 
the regional minimum programme; and 

(6) transportation for public elementary school pupils in 
addition to that provided under the regional minimum 

(iv) determine the boundaries of attendance areas within the 
public school area, for public elementary school purposes, 
and alter them from time to time as conditions demand; 

(v) where deemed advisable, make arrangements for pupils to 
attend schools in neighbouring public school areas; 

(vi) locate, finance (subject to the approval of the local govern- 
ment authorities'- concerned), construct, and close schools, 
or establish central schools and other buildings for school 

(vii) adapt, as recommended hi/ the regional director and subject 
to the approval of the Minister, the provincial curriculum 
and courses of study to meet special needs of the area; 

'See Chapter XII. 

'See subsequent paragraphs of this chapter. 



(viii) hold title to public elementary school property, and main- 
tain such property directly or, by agreement, have it main- 
tained by the maintenance staff of the regional board; 
(lx) appoint, transfer, and dismiss or accept the resignation of a 

secretary-treasurer, clerical staff, and other personnel; 
(x) perform such other duties and enjoy such other powers of 
public school boards as are not specifically assigned to the 
jurisdiction of the regional board. 


14. We have accepted as a basic principle that the control of education 
must not be removed too far from the local communit}^ Basic units for both 
post-elementar\' and public elementary education must be considerably 
larger than the attendance area of one school in order to satisfy certain 
other criteria, but the maintenance of local interest is so vital that it must 
not be sacrificed. In order that members of the board may be informed of 
specific local needs and desires, some type of committee for each school or 
group of schools, exercising at least advisory powers, would serve a useful 
purpose. Such committees would tend to keep alive local interest in edu- 
cation and to organize and promote local support for all activities of the 

15. We recommend 

(a) that for each secondary school or group of schools the regional 
board be permitted to appoint a "secondary school committee" to 
act in an advisory capacity and to exercise such powers and duties 
as may, at the board's discretion, be delegated to it; 

(b) that for each public elementary school or group of schools the pub- 
lic elementary school authority be permitted to appoint a public 
elementary school committee to act in an advisory capacity and to 
exercise such powers and duties as may, at the boards discretion, 
be delegated to it. 

16. The school principal should be a member of the school committee 
for all purposes except matters relating to his own salan' and tenure; and a 
member of the appointing board should be an ex-officio member of the 
committee for that part of the region in which he resides. Municipal coun- 
cils in the attendance area concerned should be permitted to nominate a 
limited number of members for appointment by the board to school com- 

Number of Members, and Method and Time of Election 
OF Local Education Authorities 

17. The number of members of a local education authorit)' and the 
method and time of their election are interrelated matters which must be 
viewed as a whole. 


Optimum Number of Members of a Local Education Authority 

18. No Canadian study has been made to determine the optimum num- 
ber of members of a local education authority. The general practice has 
been to have a 3-man board administer education for the small school "sec- 
tion" or "district". For the most part, cit}' and to\\Ti boards have had 7 or 
fewer members, although in a few cities the number of members has been 
as his:h as 23. Hi2i;h school and collegiate institute boards in Ontario vars' 
in size from 3 to 11 or 12 members, but the median number of members is 
less than 9. Plenderleith^ advocated a 7-man board for New Brunswick 
county units, as did a Commission on Education,- and this recommendation 
has been adopted for each of the 15 county- boards. In Nova Scotia, muni- 
cipal units are also administered hv 7-man boards. In forming larger units 
the four western pro\inces of Canada ha\ e made pro\'ision for boards of 5 
or 6 members. The American Association of School Administrators^ fa\"oured 
boards of from 5 to 9 members for rural-school community districts. The 
Tennessee Sur\ev Commission^ recommended a countv board of education 
of 7 members. Meece^ preferred a board of from 5 to 7 members. 

19. Where the unit of administration is large in area, to have a post- 
elementar\' school board with a large membership necessarily entails travel 
bv a large number of people to a central point at least once a month at 
considerable cost either to themselves or to the ratepayers. Such a board 
tends to function through standing committees— a practice which mav, con- 
trar\- to the principle that the chief function of a board is legislative, lead 
to an over-emphasis on administrative details. In our opinion, the board 
should delegate its executive functions to salaried emplovees. 

20. We believe that a board should not have less than 5 or more than 
9 members, except perhaps in the case of a large citv where the board has 
had a larger membership for manv years. In such a case we feel the number 
of members to be elected should be a matter for local decision by the rate- 
pavers, though we suggest the desirabilit}' of limiting the number, if pos- 
sible, to not more than 9. 

Method of Election 

21. Since we recommended earlier that all members of local education 

'William A. Plendcrleith et ah, The Plenderleiili Report on King's County Educational 
Survey, New Brunswick Department of Education. Fredericton, 1938. 

-Report of the Commission on Education for the Procince of Netr Brunsu;ick, Freder- 
icton. 1932. p. 39. 

*The American Association of School Administrators, School Boards in Action, 24th 
Year Book, Washington, D.C., 1946, p. 413. 

'Burgin E. Dossett, Fuhlic Education in Tennessee (summary), Nashville: Termessee 
Department of Education, 1946. 

"Leonard E. Meece, A Manual for .Sc/ioo/ Board Mevjhers, bulletin of the Bureau 
of School Service, College of Education, Uni\ersit\- of Kentuck\-, Lexington, March, 
1941, p. 22. 




authorities be elected, we need consider here only whether the members 
should be elected at large or by wards. The opinion of most experts is that 
boards which administer education in relatively small areas should be 
elected at large. There is not the same agreement, however, about the 
method of electing county and larger-unit boards. Cameron^ favoured the 
use of wards in units containing parts of more than one municipality. The 
Manitoba Select Committee- advocated selection of the larger unit board 
by wards, as did authorities in Alberta and Saskatchewan. Plenderleith^ 
recommended that the elective members of New Brunswick county boards 
be elected by wards. The members in about one-third of the county boards 
in the United States are elected by wards. Those who support this method of 
election advance the following arguments: 

( 1 ) Election by wards ensures a proper balance of representation as be- 
tween the rural and urban parts of the unit. 

( 2 ) Such units are often so great in area that, where elections are at large, 
a majority of the candidates may be unknown to most of the voters. 

(3) Election by wards is more likely to give representation to religious, 
economic, and other minority groups. 

22. It is our opinion that in Ontario no one method should be made 
mandator)' for the election of all school boards. Where the number of mem- 
bers is small, boards for both post-elementary and pubHc elementary edu- 
cation in cities and to^^^ls should be elected at large. In other parts of the 
province, however, this method is not necessarily the better one. If it were 
adopted, a post-elementar)' school authority might conceivably be repre- 
sentative of either onlv the urban or only the rural voters of the region, 
depending upon which t)'pe of community had the greater population. In 
regions large in area the argument that voters would not know the candi- 
dates if elections were at large has considerable weight. As far as pubhc 
school boards are concerned, experience with the present township school 
area boards has shown that the method of election at large is satisfactory. 

Time of Election 

23. Educators in the United States prefer that school board members 
be elected on a day other than that set for regular municipal or other gov- 
ernmental elections. We have found no evidence in Canada to support this 
preference. The argument that more people would vote at a special election 
has been disproved by experience. As far as we can determine, the practice 
of electing school trustees at the same time as municipal councils has proved 
satisfactory in Ontario. 

'Maxwell A. Cameron, Report of the Commission of Inquiry into Educational Finance, 
\'ictoria: King's Printer, Province of British Columbia, 1945. 

-Report of the Special Select Committee of the Manitoba Legislative Assembly on 
Education, Winnipeg: King's Printer, 1945. 

^Villiam A. Plenderleith, op. cit. 



24. With reference to number of members and method and time of elec- 
tion of local education authorities, we recommend 

(a) that members of public school boards be elected by qualified sup- 
porters of public elementary schools by secret ballot at the time of 
the municipal elections; 

(b) that members of boards administering post-elementary education 
(regional post-elementary school boards and regional boards of edu- 
cation) be elected by qualified ratepayers (whether supporters of 
public elementary or separate elementary schools) by secret ballot 
at the time of the municipal elections; 

( c ) ( i ) that the members of a public school board be elected at large; 
(ii) that, where the boundaries of a public school area coincide 

with those of an urban municipality, the number of members 
on the board be not less than 5 nor more than 7; 
(iii) that, in other public school areas, the number of members on 
the board be 5, and that not more than 3 members be residents 
of urban municipalities; 

(d) (i) that the members of regional post-elementary school boards 

and regional boards of education be elected either at large or 

by wards at the option of the ratepayers, the method selected 

being subject to change by plebiscite but not more frequently 

than once every five years: 
(ii) that, where election by wards is adopted in regions whose 

boundaries coincide with those of a city, the wards used for 
municipal elections be used in electing the members of the 

regional board; 
( iii ) that regions other than those whose boundaries coincide with 

those of a city be divided, on the recommendation of regional 

consultative committees, 

( 1 ) in the case of that part of Ontario divided into counties, 
by by-laws of the county council and, if any, separated 
town council or councils concerned, 

(2) in that part of the province not divided into counties, by 
the Minister, 

into not more than 9 wards, not necessarily on the basis of 
population but in such a manner as to ensure adequate repre- 
sentation of both urban and rural areas; 

(e) (i) that, in regions whose boundaries coincide with those of a city, 

regional boards of education and regional post-elementary 
school boards consist of not less than 5 members nor more than 
the greatest of: (1) 9 members, or (2) one member per ward, 
or (3) the number of members elected to the board of edu- 


cation or public school board of the city immediately prior to 
the date of formation of the region; 

(ii) that, in all other regions, regional boards of education and 
regional post-elementary school boards consist of not less than 
5 nor more than 9 members; 

(iii) that, where elections are by wards, either one or 2 members 
be elected by the qualified voters of each ward; 

( iv ) that, where elections are at large, the number of elected mem- 
bers on the regional board be not greater than 9. 

Term of Office and Method of Retirement of 
School Board Members 

25. It is generally agreed that school board members should serve at 
least tvvo years, and that terms of oflBce should overlap in order to assure 
reasonable continuity of policy. A study of the practice in Canada seems to 
indicate that a three-year term is most suitable; as far as we can determine, 
no school trustees in Canada are elected or appointed for longer terms. In 
order to make certain that the poHcies of local education authorities are 
subject at all times to the will of the electorate and to permit continuity' of 
pohcy, we recommend 

(a) (i) that, where elections are at large, board members serve for 

three-year terms; 
(ii) that, where elections are by wards, members serve for three- 
year terms except that where there are 2 members represent- 
ing a ward the term of office of each be two years; 

(b) that terms of office of members of local education authorities be so 
arranged that they overlap. 

Remuneration of Members of School Boards 

26. What is considered the best practice with regard to remuneration 
of members of school boards varies with the type of school unit concerned. 
In city and town units and in others of comparable or smaller area, the 
common practice is for members to serve without remuneration. This is 
true, except for isolated cases, in Canada, the United States, and Great 
Britain. In county or other larger-unit boards of education, however, the 
sitLiation is different. Here, in order to attend board meetings, it is fre- 
quently necessary for members to spend one day or more away from their 
ordinary places of residence. This entails two types of financial loss: actual 
out-of-pocket expenses for transportation, meals, and hotel accommodation; 
and loss of time and earnings. It has been the practice in most states and 
provinces where such larger units have been formed for remuneration to be 
paid to board members to cover one or both of these items. In Ontario, pay- 
ment of limited transportation expenses and per diem allowances is author- 
ized by statute for members of certain types of boards. Table 1 shows the 



remuneration granted to board members of larger units in certain states 
and provinces investigated by us. It is to be noted that in all cases the actual 
amounts in the second category are nominal. 

27. The area of most of the regions under our proposed reorganization 
will be large. Nevertheless, it is desirable that board meetings be held at 


Remuneration of Members of School Boards of Larger Units 
IN Certain Provinces and States 

State or Province 

Expense Account Allowed 

Allowance in Lieu of 
Time Lost 


Expenses not more than lOff per 

$5 per day up to $60 per year 

British Columbia 

Actual travelling expenses when 
on duty 



lOjii per mile once per meeting 

$4 per day to $100 per year 

New Brunswick 

Actual expenditures made in at- 
tending meetings 


Nova Scotia 

Actual expenses incurred 

"Up to $10 per meeting-day 


10(i per mile for 15 meetings plus 
10^ per mile for travelling on 
board business for number of 
days not exceeding number of 
school districts in school unit" 

$6 per meeting-day for not more 
than 15 days plus $6 per day 
for board business up to 
number of days equal to num- 
ber of districts in school unit" 


$100 per year 

$5 per meeting-day 


$100 per year 


North Carolina 

5f* per mile 

$5 per meeting-day 


lOj* per mile one way 

$2 or $3 per meeting 



$4 per meeting-day 


5^ per mile 

$180 per year 

West Virginia 

Actual expenses up to $200 per year 

$60 per year 

"Chairman is allowed mileage and per diem allowances up to a maximum of 12 ad- 
ditional days. 

least once a month; and for many members this will entail loss of earnings 
and ti-avel over long distances, with considerable expense for transportation, 
meals, and lodging. We feel that the expenses of board members should be 
a charge on the ratepayers of the region or public school area concerned, 
and that a reasonable per diem allowance should be paid to members to 
ensure that no qualified person is discouraged, because of possible financial 
loss, from serving on the board. We therefore recommend 


that local education authorities be permitted to make provision for re- 
imbursing their members, according to a scale approved by the Min- 
ister, for out-of-pocket expenses incurred in attending meetings or when 
otherwise officially engaged on board business; and for the payment to 
members of a per diem allowance not exceeding nmxima—per diem and 
annual total— to be determined by the Minister. 

Relationship Between Local Education Authorities 
AND Municipal Councils 

28. It has often been suggested that municipal councils should have 
more control over the budgets of local education authorities. Where local 
education authorities are appointed bodies, there may be some justification 
for this suggestion, since it may be claimed that tax rates should be set by 
bodies directly responsible to the ratepayers. However, it is the general 
view in Canada and the United States that, where both municipal councils 
and school boards are elected, the former should have no overriding author- 
ity to determine the amount of current expenditures for education. With 
this view we are in agreement. The recommendation we have made that all 
local education authorities be elected enables us to advise more strongly 
that, in so far as current expenditures are concerned, education authorities 
continue to be fiscally independent of municipal councils. 

29. The method of financing capital expenditures in Ontario differs 
from that in most other provinces. Except for school authorities operating 
in unorganized territory, all debentures for purposes of borrowing money 
for capital expenditures must be issued by municipal councils.^ Where a 
council refuses to pass a by-law authorizing the issuance of debentures for 
capital expenditures, the question may be decided by a vote of the rate- 
payers in the school unit concerned. In the past, most local education au- 
thorities have had jurisdiction over units lying wholly within one local 
municipality, and the issuance of debentures by the council on behalf of 
the board was a relatively simple matter. With the advent of township 
school areas and larger high school districts, the situation has become more 
complex, because local education authorities may have jurisdiction over all 
or parts of several local municipalities. For the larger units we have recom- 
mended, three possible methods of financing capital expenditures are as 
follows : 

( 1 ) A regional board, since it will be responsible to all ratepayers of the 
region, might be given power to issue debentures. 

(2) A county council might be authorized to issue debentures upon the 
request of a regional board, but this would mean the transference of 
such authority from the councils of the local municipalities, which are 
the primary local governing bodies. 

^For the method used by separate school boards see Chapter XIX. 


(3) Debentures might continue to be issued by the municipahty in which 
the school is to be located, subject to the consent of the other muni- 
cipal councils within whose jurisdiction the education authority re- 
questing the capital expenditure operates. 
30. After considering the alternatives, we feel that, since the present 

system operates satisfactorily, there is no need to introduce changes. We 

therefore recommend 

(a) that in determining the amount of current expenditures local edu- 
cation authorities continue to be independent of municipal councils, 
and that such councils continue to he required to levy and raise 
such sums as are required for current expenditures by the local edu- 
cation authorities; 

(b) that a regional board be authorized to require the council of each 
local municipality all or part of which lies within the region to raise 
by taxation the same proportion of its net post-elementary school 
budget as the proportion which the equalized assessment of the 
municipality or part thereof is of the total equalized assessment of 
the region; 

(c) (i) that a regional board of education (urban type) be authorized 

to require the council of each local municipality all or part of 
which lies within the region to raise by taxation the same pro- 
portion of its net public elementary school budgef^ as the pro- 
portion which the equalized assessment of the property of 
public school supporters of the municipality or part thereof is 
of the total equalized assessment of the property of public 
school supporters of the region; 

(ii) that a regional board of education (rural type) be authorized 
to require the council of each local municipality all or part of 
which lies within the region to raise by taxation the same pro- 
portion of the net cost of the minimum programme in the pub- 
lic elementary schools of the region as the proportion lohich 
the equalized assessment of the property of public school sup- 
porters of the municipality or part thereof is of the total 
equalized assessment of the property of all public school sup- 
porters of the region; 

(iii) that a regional board of education (rural type) be authorized, 
on behalf of a public school board under its jurisdiction, to 
require each municipality or part thereof in each public school 
area to raise by taxation the same proportion of the supple- 
mentary public elementary school budget as the proportion 
which the total equalized assessment of the municipality or 
part thereof is of the total equalized assessment of the public 
school area; 

'Including a proportion of the cost of administration and supervision of education in 
public elementary schools. 


(iv) t]uit an autonomous public school board be authorized to re- 
quire the council of each local municipality all or part of 
which lies within the area to raise by taxation the same pro- 
portion of the net public elementary school budget as the pro- 
portion which the equalized assessment of the property of the 
public school supporters of the municipality or part thereof 
is of the equalized assessment of the property of all public 
school supporters in the public school area; 

(d) that, where a region or public school area contains unorganized 
townships or unsurveyed territory, the regional board or public 
school board, as the case may be, be authorized to levy and raise 
rates, as if it were a municipal council, on the equalized assessment 
of the property in such unorganized township or unsurveyed terri- 
tory of the supporters of the schools under its jurisdiction; 

(e) that debentures to secure the repayment of money bound for capital 
expemlitures^ be issued by by-law of the municipality in which the 
school or improvement is to be located, subject to the agreement of 
the councils of a majority- of the municipalities located within the 
region or public school area concerned; 

(/) that, where such majority approval by the councils is not forthcom- 
ing, the application to borrow money for such capital expenditures 
shall be submitted for decision, in the case of expenditures for post- 
elementary schools, to the vote of all the ratepayers of the region, 
and, in the case of expenditures for public elementary schools, to 
the vote of all supporters of the public schools of the public school 
area; and that the municipal council concerned be required to im- 
plement the wishes of the ratepayers as expressed by such vote; 

(g) that, where the school or improvement for which capital expendi- 
tures^ are to be made is to be located in an unorganized township 
or in unsurveyed territory, the regional board or public school 
board, as the case may be, be authorized to issue the debentures, 
subject to the approval of the councils of a majority of the muni- 
cipalities (including improvement districts) located in whole or in 
part within the region or public school area. 

Qualification and Disqualification of School Board Members 

31. There are several anomalies in the various Acts dealing with the 
qualifications of school trustees. The provisions were originally laid down 
at a time when the 3-member rural school board and the 6-member urban 
school board constituted practically the only types of local education au- 
thorities. As new types of boards evolved to administer new kinds of units, 

^With the exception of those for separate schools. 

^A majority of the municipalities is to be interpreted as meaning those liable for 
more than 50 per cent of the debt. 

*With the exception of those for separate schools. 


corresponding amendments were made in the Acts. Since we are recom- 
mending new types of local education authorities, it does not seem neces- 
sary to go into the details of the present statutes relating to qualifications. 
It is obvious that qualifications and disqualifying factors must apply uni- 
formly to members of all local education authorities for post-elementary and 
public elementary education. 
32. We therefore recommend 

(a) that in order to be eligible for election to a regional post-elemen- 
tary school board, a regional board of education, or a public school 
board, a candidate 
(i) be a Canadian citizen or a British subject; 
( ii ) be at least 21 years of age; 
(iii) reside within the region or public school area in which he is 

seeking election, or within 5 miles of the boundary thereof; 
( iv ) be a ratepaijer,^ the husband or ivife of a ratepayer or, in the 
case of a unit which contains rural territory, a son or daughter 
if resident on the farm with the assessed owner or tenant of a 
farm consisting of not less than 20 acres; 
(v) be not otherwise disqualified; 
(h) that the following be disqualifying factors for election to a regional 
board of education, a regional post-elementary school board, or a 
public school board: 
( i ) having overdue or unpaid school taxes at the time of nomina- 
(ii) being a teacher or supervisory official employed by a local 

education authority; 
(iii) being a member of a municipal council, of the Provincial or 
Dominion Legislature, or of another local education authority; 
(iv) in the case of election to a public school board, being a 

separate school supporter; 
(v) mental illness; 
(c) that in each of the following occurrences or situations a member of 
a regional board of education, a regional post-elementary school 
board, or a public school board shall ipso facto vacate his seat, and 
the remaining members shall declare his seat vacant: 

(i) three months' absence from board meetings without author- 
ization by resolution entered in the minutes; 
(ii) sustained conviction on ah indictable offence; 
(iii) mental illness; 
(iv) cessation of conformity with the residence qualification; 

^"Ratepayer" defined as in the present Public Schools Act for purposes of electing 
public school boards and including separate school supporters for the purpose of electing 
regional boards. 

"Any candidate who qualifies for election by being the husband, wife, son, or daughter 
of a ratepayer would be disqualified under this provision if the person on whom qualifica- 
tion is based had unpaid or overdue taxes. 


(v) having a pecuniary interest in a contract with the board of 

which he is a member;^ 
(vi) acceptance of office as a member of a municipal council, of 
the Provincial or Dominion Legislature, or of another local 
education authority; 
(vii) employment as a teacher or supervisory official by a local 

education authority; 
(viii) having any part of his school taxes for the preceding year or 
years overdue or unpaid at the date set for nomination of 
new members of the board; 
(ix) in the case of members of a public school board, becoming 
a separate school supporter. 

Advisory Vocatioxal Committees 

33. Early in the history of education in Upper Canada, subjects such as 
agriculture, manual training, and household science found a place in the 
schools of the province, but no special arrangement was made with regard 
to the administration of such courses. With the growth of interest in in- 
dustrial and technical education, a special system of administration de- 
veloped. The Industrial Education Act of 1911, based on a report of Dr. 
John Seath, provided for the estabUshment of advisory vocational com- 
mittees. Dr. Seath recommended as follows: 

The appointment of Advisory Committees for the management of duly established 
Industrial and Technical Schools; such Committees to consist of members of the 
School Boards and an equal number of other citizens, representing the employers 
and the employees, who are qualified voters and who are specially competent to 
advise and assist, and the proposals of such Committees to be subject to the 
approval of the Boards with which they are connected." 

He had found that such committees were operating in England, Scotland, 
and the United States, and he reported that the result of a special inquiry 
into their value was conclusively in their favour. They secured the sympathy 
and co-operation of tlie local industries, brought the schools into close touch 
with the conditions of the trades, and kept the equipment and courses of 
study abreast of the times. 

34. In Ontario at the present time, a local education authority with 
jurisdiction over secondary education may, subject to the approval of the 
Minister, estabhsh and maintain a vocational school. Where, in accordance 
with these regulations, this is done, "the said schools or departments shaU 
be under the management and control of an advisory vocational committee 
appointed by this Board."^ Subject to the approval of the Minister and the 
board, the advisory committee has authority to provide a site, building, and 

'Subject to the exceptions of Section 140 of The Public Schools Act, R.S.O., 1937. 

^John Seath, Education for Industrial Purposes, Toronto: King's Printer, 1911, p. 347. 
Dr. Seath had been commissioned by the government in 1909 to report upon a desirable 
and practicable system of technical education for Ontario. 

T/ie Vocational Education Act, R.S.O., 1937, Ch. 369, as amended to 1950, Sec. 6. 


equipment or to arrange for conducting the school or department in an 
existing school or other building, and to prescribe courses of study and 
provide for examinations and diplomas. An advisory vocational committee 
has 8 or 12 members: one half derived from the appointing body, the other 
half composed of representatives, in equal numbers, of certain employer 
and employee groups. Where the membership of a secondary school board 
includes an appointee of a public school board, separate school board, or 
county council, he must be among those appointed to the advisory com- 

35. The advisory vocational committee has the power to co-opt addi- 
tional members from the board and from the employer and employee 
groups, provided that the number co-opted from the employee group is the 
same as the number co-opted from the employer group. 

36. The advisory vocational committee is not a local education authority. 
Yet it is more than a special committee of the board with power to add to 
its membership. It has statutory powers and duties of its own as laid down 
in The Vocational Education Act, and may therefore be classed as a sub- 

37. We recognize the great service rendered by advisory vocational 
committees in establishing vocational education as an important part of 
the general educational system. We believe, however, that under our pro- 
posed reorganization such committees will no longer be necessary. 

38. Accordingly we recommend 

that statutory provision for the appointment of advisory vocational com- 
mittees be repealed, and that existing committees of this type he 

39. Regional post-elementary school boards and regional boards of 
education, however, will wish to have the benefit of advice and assistance 
of persons with specialized knowledge. We therefore recommend 

that regional post-elementary school hoards and regional hoards of 
education he empowered to co-opt persons with special qualifications 
to act as advisers to the hoard. 



Transportation of Pupils 

1. The transportation of pupils to and from school became recognized 
as a responsibility of local education authorities in this country as a result 
of the consolidated-school movement during and immediately following the 
First World War. The reasons for transporting pupils were: to efifect 
economies by increasing the number of pupils per teacher and thus reducing 
the number of teachers and classrooms; to bring together suflBcient pupils 
to make possible the teaching in senior grades in elementary schools of 
specialized courses such as elementary agriculture, manual training, and 
domestic science; and to secure sufficient pupils to warrant the operation 
of at least one secondar\^ school classroom. Comparatively poor road con- 
ditions and reliance on horse-drawn vehicles circumscribed the area which 
could be consolidated. With the advent of paved highways and automobiles, 
however, there was a rapid increase in the use of transportation to bring 
children living in sparsely settled districts to a school with adequate edu- 
cational facihties. 

2. The main feature of the consolidated-school movement was a central 
school in a rural municipality or school area, to which there was carefully 
planned transportation. It was claimed that such a system not only resulted 
in improved educational facilities but also afforded pupils an opportimitv 
of continuing their education while living at home. As early as 1908, for 
example, Hudson Township in Northern Ontario preferred to establish a 
central school and provide transportation rather than to operate a large 
number of small schools. The Consolidated Schools Act was passed in 1919, 
but it resulted in the establishment of only a limited number of consolidated 
schools. The majoritv of these were in the territorial districts; all pro\dded 
transportation for pupils; and nearly all oflFered secondar)^ school courses. 

3. Following the introduction in 1936 of a new programme of studies 
in elementary schools, the Department of Education ceased to encourage 
the organization of fifth classes in ungraded rural schools and encouraged 
the transportation of rural pupils to secondary schools under an arrange- 
ment by two or more elementarv school boards. This was promoted by the 



Department in order to afford rural pupils a choice of academic, commercial, 
or technical education. The Department originally paid 60 per cent of the 
net cost of transportation but reduced this to 50 per cent in 1941-42. Since 
1945, transportation costs have been included as approved cost for legislative 
grant purposes, and in some cases up to 90 per cent of the net cost has been 
paid by the Department of Education. With the growth of larger units of 
administration for secondary schools, secondary school boards have assumed 
the major responsibility for the transportation of secondary school pupils. 

4. The number of pupils transported has increased rapidly, particularly 
within the last five vears, owing to the development of township school 
areas and larger high school districts. For example, the number of pupils 
transported to secondary schools during the school year 1943-44 was 1,643;^ 
during the school year 1948-49 the number was approximately 17,000.- In 
addition, approximately 8,000 pupils were transported during the latter 
year to elementary schools.^ Some secondary schools today transport more 
than 90 per cent of their students. 

5. There is provision in the present statiites for the transportation of 
pupils by train, horse-drawn vehicle, or motor vehicle (including motor 
boat). "N^Tiere transportation is by horse-drawn or motor vehicle, an agree- 
ment must be executed by the school board and the operator. This must 
include a description of each route, the length of each route in miles, the 
number of pupils to be transported, the period to be covered by the con- 
tract, and the amount to be paid by the board for the service. Contracts are 
subject, for legislative grant purposes, to approval by the Minister of Edu- 
cation. Where transportation is by motor vehicle (other than motor boat), 
the vehicle must be licensed under The Public Vehicles Act, and must be 
insured and operated as that Act and regulations made under it provide. 
Where transportation is by motor boat, the requirements of the Dominion 
Department of Transport must be met. 

6. WTiere transportation is provided bv a board of trustees of a public 
or separate school, the approved cost of transportation may be included as 
a cost of operation for legislative grant purposes. Where transportation is 
provided by a secondary school board, the approved cost is, for legislative 
grant purposes, included under maintenance. During the calendar year 
1948, school boards spent a total of $2,385,446 on transportation of pupils. 
Of this sum, elementary' school boards spent $824,497 for the transportation 
of pupils to other elementary schools and $544,314 for transportation to 
secondary schools. Secondary school boards paid $1,016,635 for the trans- 
portation of their own pupils. The length of the average route to a second- 
ar)' school is 23 miles, and the average time spent in travelling this distance 
is 63 minutes. Approximately 85 per cent of the pupils transported to 
secondary schools leave home after 7.30 a.m., walk not more than half a 

'Peport of the Minister of Education, Ontario, 1944, p. 188. 
-Report of the Minister of Education. Ontario. 1948. p. 186. 


mile to meet the bus, travel less than 20 miles to school, and are home again 
by 5.00 p.m. 

7. The cost of transporthig pupils to secondary schools in 1948-49 was 
approximately one cent per pupil-mile. The Department of Education has, 
for legislative grant purposes, established maximum rates according to 
passenger load and distance. ^ The low per-pupil transportation cost has 
been attributed to the growth of larger high school districts and the con- 
sequent transportation of large numbers of pupils per route. Experience in 
some states of the United States indicates that transportation of pupils in 
school buses which are owned and operated by a local education authority 
may be more economical than transportation in vehicles operated under 

8. With the growth of larger post-elementary schools, centrally located, 
transportation of pupils will become increasingly necessary. We therefore 

(a) that a regional board be empowered to include for legislative grant 
purposes the approved operating cost of transporting pupils to and 
from publichj supported post-elementary schools; 

(b) that regional boards be encouraged to purchase and operate vehicles 
for the transportation of pupils; that legislative grants be paid on 
the capital cost of the vehicles so purchased; and that, for legislative 
grant purposes, maxima for capital ami operating costs of transpor- 
tation be determined by the Minister of Education. 

9. Although we do not foresee a general need for the transportation of 
large numbers of pupils to elementary schools, there may be a limited need 
in some regions. In order to avoid duplication of transportation facilities 
and to reduce costs, it will be advisable to co-ordinate all transportation of 
pupils within a region. Where the regional board of education type of 
administration has been adopted, the cost of transporting pupils to public 
elementary schools should be distributed as equitably as possible among 
all public school supporters of the region. We recommend 

{a) that local education authorities- be authorized to enter into agree- 
ments with other local education authorities- to share on a pro rata 
basis the cost of transporting pupils to publicly supported schools; 
and that the approved cost thereof be eligible for general legislative 

(b) that in regions under the jurisdiction of regional boards of education 
transportation of pupils to public elementary schools within the 
region be co-ordinated with that of pupils to post-elementary 

(c) that a regional board of education, in determining its minimum 
programme for the public elementary schools of the region, be 

^Report of the Minister of Education, Ontario, 1948, p. 189. 
"Including separate school boards. 


empowered, subject to the approval of the Minister for legislative 
grant purposes, to fix minimuin and maximum distances for the 
transportation of pupils to public elementary schools, and to include 
the cost of transportation luithin these limits in the regional mini- 
mum programme to he financed by a common rate on all public 
school supporters of the region. 

10. The maximum and minimum distances set by regional boards of 
education for the transportation of pupils to pubhc elementary schools will 
vary from region to region, depending upon the nature of the terrain and 
the distribution and density of the population. Public school boards desiring 
to transport pupils who live nearer to the school than the minimum distance 
established by the regional board (or farther than the maximum distance) 
would budget this expense as a part of their supplementary budget, subject 
to the approval of the Minister for legislative grant purposes. 

Services in Lieu of Transportation 

11. In many regions, particularly in Northern Ontario, it may not be 
feasible, although a need exists, to transport pupils to secondary schools 
and junior colleges. Where this situation is encountered in other provinces, 
certain services are provided in lieu of transportation. Nova Scotia has 
made provision for the central authority to pay 75 per cent of the "net 
cost"^ of the board and lodging of pupils who cannot be transported, or of 
the maintenance of hostels, which are erected and paid for by the pro- 
vincial government. The Manitoba Department of Education has recently 
approved the construction of a hostel in the northern part of the province. 
In 1946, 22 of the 52 school divisions in Alberta operated one or more 
dormitories. Capital outlay for building and equipment is a charge against 
the divisional board, but the cost of operation and maintenance is met as 
far as possible through the payment of fees by parents. In localities where 
there is not a sufficient number of pupils to warrant the establishment of a 
hostel or dormitory, it is common practice for a local education authority 
to pav part of the cost of the board and lodging of pupils. 

12. We recommend 

(a) that, where transportation of pupils to puhlichj supported post- 
elementary schools is not feasible for the ivholc or part of a i/ear, 
or where the cost would be prohibitive, regional boards be author- 
ized to provide residential facilities for pupils, to paif allowances 
for board and lodging of pupils, or, in exceptional cases and subject 
to the approval of the Minister, to utilize correspondence courses 
provided by the Department of Education; 

(b) that the cost of providing and operating residential facilities and 
the cost of allowances for board and lodging for post-elementary 
school pupils be eligible, subject to the approval of the Minister, 
for general legislative grants. 

^Regulation No. 44 (III) (2) under the Nova Scotia Education Act. 



Residences for Teac]hers 

13. It is a common practice in the Prairie Provinces and in Nova Scotia 
for local education authorities to provide residences for teachers in rural 
areas; and provision for such has been made in Ontario in statutes dating 
back to the Act of 1846. We recommend 

(a) that, subject to the approval of the Minister for legislative grant 
purposes, local education authorities be empowered to construct or 
acquire residences for teachers; 

(b) that a teacher be charged a reasonable rental for such accommo- 

Non-Resident Pupils 
Post-Elementary Schools 

14. Under the proposed regional organization for post-elementary school 
purposes every child normally domiciled in Ontario will qualify as a resident 
of at least one of the regions, and, accordingly, there will be no non-resident 
post-elementary school pupils. The term "county pupil", as at present used, 
will no longer be applicable. The terms "resident pupil" and "non-resident 
pupil", as defined in the present statutes, are confusing: a resident of an 
administrative unit may be a "non-resident .pupil" of that unit, and a non- 
resident may be a "resident pupil". The use of these terms should be 

15. We recommend 

(a) that a pupil attending a post-elementary school in a region be 
designated a "regional pupil" if his normal domicile is within the 
boundaries of the region; 

(b) that a pupil attending a post-elementary school in a region be 
designated a "non-regional pupil" if his normal domicile is not 
within the boundaries of the region. 

16. All regional pupils, whether or not they reside on land on which 
taxes are paid to a municipalit)' within the region, should be entitled to 
attend a post-elementar)' school without payment of tuition fees.' We 

( a ) that a regional pupil be entitled to attend a post-elementary school 
in the region without payment of tuition fees;^ 

( b ) that, where a regional pupil is normally domiciled on land held by 
the Crown in right of Canada or Ontario and where his parent of 
guardian is not liable for, and does not pay, taxes for school purposes 
within the region, the cost of his post-elementary education- be 
borne by the province. 

17. Non-regional pupils mav be classified as follows: 

( 1 ) Those who attend a post-elementary school in a region in which they 
are not normally domiciled because they are nearer by publicly travel- 

'With the possible exception of the third year of junior college. See Chapter XL 
^Tuition fees, and cost of transportation or services in lieu thereof. 


led roads to it, or to a transportation route leading to it, than they are 
to a post-elementar)- school or transportation route leading to it in the 
region in which they reside. 

(2) Those who attend a post-elementary school in a region in which they 
are not normally domiciled because they cannot obtain the course or 
courses they desire in a post-elementary school in the region in which 
they are normally domiciled. 

(3) Those who, although a post-elementary school in the region in which 
they are normally domiciled offers a suitable course or courses and is 
nearer to their place of residence by road or transportation route, 
attend by preference a post-elementary school in another region. 

18. No student should be prevented from attending the nearest second- 
ar\' school or junior college offering the t)'pe of course he desires, whether 
or not it is located in his own region. On the other hand, parents or guardians 
should not have the right, without pa)'ment of fees, to send a child to a 
post-elementary school in another region if there is a post-elementarv school 
offering the course or courses he desires readily accessible in the region 
in which he is normally domiciled, unless thev are assessed in that resion 
for an amount at least equal to the a\'erage assessment for post-elementary 
school purposes of the residents of the region. We recommend 

(a) that the tuition fees of a non-regional pupil in categories (1) and 
(2), above, be paid by the regional board of the region in ivhich 
the pupil is normally domiciled and be based on the net cost^ to 
the board of the region in which he attends school; 

(b) that a non-regional pupil in category (3), above, unless the parent 
or guardian is assessed in the region in which he does not reside 
for an amount at least equal to the average assessment for post- 
elementary school purposes of the residents of the region, be 
admitted to a post-elementary school only on condition that a 
tuition fee based on the net cost^ of post-elementary education in 
the region be paid bi/ his parent or guardian. 

Elementary Schools 

19. Notwithstanding the comprehensive provisions of the administrative 
organization we have proposed, there mav be children, particularly in 
territorial districts, whose parents cannot become supporters of either a 
pubHc or a separate school owing to the fact that the\' are normally domi- 
ciled in an area not included in a public school area. Responsibilit)^ for the 
elementary school education of such children should be vested in the 
Minister of Education. We recommend 

that the Minister of Education provide for the elementary school edu- 
cation of children for whose education no public school board or 
separate school board can be held responsible, through services such as 
correspondence courses and school cars or through such means as the 

'Gross cost of education less legislative grants, on a per-pupil basis. 


payment of tuition fees and transportation costs or allowances for board 
and lodging while they are attending a public school. 

20. Provision for the elementary school education of all children resident 
in a pubHc school area whose parents are not separate school supporters^ 
should be a responsibility of the public school board of the area. We 

(a) that public school pupils be classified as resident pupils, non-resident 
pupils, or Crown Land public school pupils; 

(b) that a public school pupil who resides within a public school area 
on land held by the Crown in right of Canada or Ontario and whose 
parent or guardian is not liable for, and does not pay, taxes for the 
support of public schools within the public school area be desig- 
nated a "Crown Land public school pupiT'; 

(c) that a public school pupil (other than a Crown Land public school 
pupil) whose normal domicile is within the public school area in 
which he attends school be designated a "resident pupil";^ 

(d) that a public school pupil (other than a Crown Land public school 
pupil) whose normal domicile is in a public school area other than 
the one in which he attends school be designated a "non-resident 

21. With reference to the payment of tuition fees, we recommend 

(a) that a resident public school pupil be admitted to a public ele- 
mentary school without payment of tuition fees;^ 

( b ) that a non-resident school pupil whose parent or guardian is assessed 
for school purposes in the public school area in which the pupil 
attends school for an amount at least equal to the average assess- 
ment of residents of the area be admitted to a public school therein 
without payment of tuition fees; 

(c) that the board of the public school area in which a non-resident 
pupil, other than one such as is specified in (b) above, is normally 
domiciled be required to pay the tuition fees, based on the net cost 
of education to the board of the school attended, of such a pupil 
after the regional director or regional superintendent has certified 
in writing that a public school in a neighbouring public school area 
is more accessible; 

(d) that the parent or guardian of a non-resident pupil, other than one 
such as specified in (b) and (c) above, be required to pay fees in 
such amount as may be prescribed by the board; but that such fees 
should not exceed the average net cost per pupil of operating the 

^For a discussion of non-resident separate school pupils see Chapter XIX. 

-Including a child maintained in a county house of refuge or a children's shelter. 

'In the case of a public school pupil maintained in a count}' house of refuge or chil- 
dren's shelter, the tuition fees should be paid by the county council to the board of the 
school attended and be based upon the net cost of education to the public school board. 


( e ) that the payment of the tuition fees of a Crown Land public school 
pupil who attends a public school in the public school area in 
which he resides be a responsibility of the Minister of Education. 

Enforcement of Compulsory Attendance 

22. Enforcement of the statutory provisions relating to compulsory 
attendance should be a responsibility of local education authorities, subject 
to the Acts and regulations. In the past it has frequently not been feasible 
for a board, owing to the relatively small number of pupils under its juris- 
diction, to employ attendance officers on a full-time basis. We have been 
advised that, as a solution to this problem, the appointment of county 
attendance oflRcers and staffs has been under consideration. 

23. Since we have recommended regions which in some cases will be 
larger than counties as the basic units of administration for post-elementary 
education, it seems logical that each region should serve as an administrative 
unit for the enforcement of compulsory attendance. Since regional boards 
will be elected by qualified ratepayers, including supporters of both public 
and separate elementary schools, one attendance ojBBcer and staff, financed 
through the regional board budget, might well serve the entire unit. 

24. We recommend 

(a) that enforcement of the provisions for compulsory school attendance 
in publicly supported schools be a responsibility of a regional board 
of education or of a regional post-elementary school board; 

(b) that a regional board of education be empowered to appoint a 
regional school attendance officer to the staff of the regional director 
of education;''- 

( c ) that regional boards of education which do not appoint supervisory 
officials and regional post-elementary school boards be empowered 
to appoint regional school attendance officers to work under the 
direction of the board and in co-operation with the regional super- 
intendent of education.^ 

Employment of Pupils of Compulsory School Attendance Age 

25. We have recommended- that legislation be enacted to prohibit the 
employment of any child who is or should be enrolled for full-time atten- 
dance in a school, except, under specified conditions, before or after school 
hours or when school is not in session. The enforcement of this provision 
should be a responsibility of regional boards of education and of regional 
post-elementary school boards. We recommend 

that regional boards of education and regional post-elementary school 
boards be rccjuired and empowered to enforce the statutes relating to 
employment on any school day of any child who is or should be enrolled 
for full-time attendance in a school located in the region. 
'Sec Chapter XIII. ^See Chapter III. 



Administration of Health Services in Schools 

26. In 1908 the first statutory provision in Ontario for health services 
in schools permitted a public or separate school board to provide for the 
medical and dental inspection of pupils. In 1919 the Department of Edu- 
cation established a branch to supervise the school health programme. 
Summer school courses open to graduate nurses were offered, leading to the 
diploma "Approved School Nurse". In 1920 the University of Western 
Ontario instituted one-\"ear courses in public health nursing, leading to a 
B.Sc. degree in public health. Departmental summer courses were dis- 
continued in 1931 when it was found that the universities had trained a 
sufficient number of public health nurses to meet the existing demand. 

27. In 1925 the Department of Education withdrew from the supervision 
of school health services, and the Department of Health assumed responsi- 
bility. Amendments to the Acts provided that any new health services that 
were inaugurated must be provided and paid for by municipal boards of 
health, and must be operated under agreements with local education 
authorities; but acceptable programmes of medical and dental inspection 
of pupils that were in operation under a public or separate school board 
prior to July 21, 1924, might be continued. 

28. Legislation in 1940 permitted county councils to employ public 
health nurses for school health services at the expense of the county. Local 
direction for the programme was to be given by the Medical Officer of 
Health. In 1943 an amendment to The Public Health Act permitted the 
establishment of health units, through which all schools, both rural and 
urban, in an area of considerable extent might be supplied with school 
health services as a part of a community health programme. Data relating 
to existing school health services are given in Table 1. 

29. These data show that approximately 59 per cent of the pupils en- 
rolled in the elementary and secondary schools of Ontario in 1948 had 
school health service "of some degree". The number of personnel employed^ 
indicates that, in some instances at least, the school health service is defin- 
itely limited. But an understanding of the requirements of adequate school 
health services is growing, and much progress has already been made 
toward meeting these requirements. 

30. In Brief 56, submitted by the School Health Section of the Ontario 
Educational Association, it is stated that: 

A School Health Service should be an integral part of the community Health 
programme, which is developed around the family as the unit for health super- 
vision and service extending from the pre-natal period to the end of life and 
embracing all human and environmental factors that affect the individual and the 
family in their community relationships. 

It is, we believe, with an appreciation of these responsibilities of public 
health services that larger local units of administration for health services 
—the public health units— are being developed. 

^Report of the Minister of Education, Ontario, 1948, pp. 136-141. 



Health Services in Ontario Schools, 1948° 



Health units in which school health service is 
under unit boards of health 

Municipalities in which school health service is 
under local board of health 

Municipalities in which school health service is 
under local school board 

School health service under county council 

School health service under collegiate board 

School health service sponsored by school board 
and provided by private agencies 











Total school population receiving school health 
service of some degree 


Enrolment in elementary and secondary schools, 
Ontario, 1947-48 


Percentage of school population receiving some 
form of school health service 


"Adapted from the Report of the Minister of Education, Ontario, 1948, pp. 136-141. 

31. To be effective, school health services should form an integral part 
of a comprehensive programme of general community health services. 
This requires that school health services be administered by local health 
authorities in co-operation with local education authorities. Accordingly v^e 

(a) that the provision, financing, and administration of health services 
in all publicly supported schools continue to be the responsibility 
of local boards of health, as at present set forth in Sections 91 and 
91(a) of The Public Health Act; 

(b) that the regulation, inspection, and supervision of school health 
services continue to be a responsibility of the Minister of Health, 
as at present set forth in Sections 5(v) and 12 of The Public Health 

(c) that local education authorities and school staffs be encouraged to 
co-operate with local health authorities in the provision of adequate 
school health services. 

32. Some of the local education authorities which instituted school 
health services of their own before July 21, 1924, have found this form of 


administration satisfactory and may wish to continue it. There is no reason 
why this should not be permitted, subject to the condition that expenditures 
so incurred be not eligible for legislative grants for educational purposes. 
An arrangement might be made whereby local education authorities pro- 
viding school health services could receive grants on their expenditures 
from the Department of Health. We recommend 

that expenditures for health services incurred by local education authori- 
ties which now provide health services under the provisions of Section 
80(j) of The Pubhc Schools Act, or Section 45(m) of The Separate Schools 
Act, or Section 25 (1) (c) of The High Schools Act be not eligible for 
general legislative grants from the Department of Education. 

33. In order to further the co-operation between local education authori- 
ties and local boards of health and to assist in the co-ordination of their 
eflForts, we recommend 

that provision be made in The Public Health Act for the appointment 
by a local education authority of an official representative as a member 
of the local board of health or unit board of health. 

34. The trend toward the formation of health units by the Department 
of Health seems to be sound. An expansion of this type of organization will, 
it is to be hoped, result in the near future in the provision of adequate 
school health services for all pupils in publicly supported schools. We 

that the formation of health units by the Department of Health be 

35. We believe that all employees of local education authorities should 
receive medical examinations periodically. Accordingly we recommend 

(a) that an individual appointed to teach on a Letter of Permission in 
any publicly supported school be required to undergo an examina- 
tion by a qualified medical practitioner appointed and paid by the 
employing local education authority, and that the results thereof 
be reported to the Minister of Education; 

(b) that periodic X-ray examinations of the chest be made compulsory 
for all employees of local education authorities; and that the cost 
of such examinations be borne by the employing authority and be 
included as part of approved cost of operating for legislative grant 

( c ) ( i ) that the Minister of Education be authorized to require, upon 

the written request of a school board, an employee of a local 
education authority to undergo an examination by a physician 
or psychiatrist selected by the Minister; 
(ii) that the physician or psychiatrist make a confidential written 
report of such examination to the Minister only; 


(iii) that the cost of such examination, inclusive of any necessary 
travelling costs but exclusive of required treatment, be borne 
by the employing education authority and be included as part 
of approved cost of operating for legislative grant purposes; 
(d) that tvhere, following an examination, the medical report discloses 
conditions which, in the opinion of the Minister, warrant such 
action, and after due notification has been given to the local edu- 
cation authority and to the employee, the Minister suspend or cancel 
the certificate of the teacher, or, in the case of a non-teaching 
employee, require his suspension or dismissal. 




Concepts of Administration, Supervision, and Inspection 

1. There was no need for administrative and supervisory personnel in 
the schools in the earlier periods of European history, because there was 
no differentiation between teaching; and administrative functions. Both 
were discharged by the teacher, who chose his own curriculum and texts, 
collected fees, provided school premises, and evaluated the progress of his 
pupils. As soon as a teacher employed other teachers, however, a primary 
division of labour occurred. The employing teacher became responsible for 
what we now call the administrative and supervisory duties; but these 
were slight. However, when the State and Church began to make pro\ision 
for education, administrative and supervisory practices on a larger scale 
became necessary. It was from the system of administration and supervision 
developed in the German Protestant states, particularly Prussia, that the 
administrative traditions of Northern Europe and North America largely 
sprang. The Church, although its interest in education antedated that of 
the State, had confined its efforts chiefly to the operation of individual 
schools. But when Prussia originated the practice of appointing the clergy 
to exercise the function of supervision in the state-supported schools. Church 
and State became partners in controlling the administrative and supervisory 
aspects of education. 

2. There is no clear-cut line of demarcation between administration and 
supervision. Both terms have been used to denote all educational activities 
connected with the schools, other than those which are purely instructional: 
not only the improvement of instruction and the professional growth of tlie 
teacher but also those functions which have as their aim the securing of 
public support and the material facilities necessar}' for effective classroom 
work. A narrower interpretation of both words, however, makes possible a 
reasonably definite distinction between the two concepts. Supervision mav 
be taken to include the evaluation of the efficiencv of the teaching and 
learning processes in the classroom and the means of improving the learning 
efficiency of pupils by helping the teacher to overcome instructional diflB- 
culties. Administration may be taken to include the arrangements made 



for "bringing the right child to the right school, under the right teacher". 
It is concerned with such things as finance, the employment of teachers, 
the provision and maintenance of school buildings, suppHes, the number 
of pupils per teacher, statistical reports, attendance, and public relations. 

3. Inspection is a concept that cuts across the concepts of administration 
and supervision as interpreted in the narrower sense. It is essentially evalu- 
ation and hence may be regarded as sx-nonymous with that aspect of 
supervision, but that aspect only. It has to do also with the evaluation of 
the material provision for education, such as the nature and care of build- 
ings, equipment, and supplies. Thus it is difficult to distinguish sharply 
between the functions of administration, super\dsion, and inspection: in- 
spection is necessar)^ in both administration and supervision; and the 
administrator and the supervisor have many duties which overlap. 

4. Because an attempt was being made to achieve some form of standard- 
ization in a large number of wideh^ dispersed small schools, the first 
inspection systems established, such as those in the German states, were 
concerned with the evaluation of the administrative rather than the super- 
visors^ aspects of education. The further division of the function of inspection 
into administration and supervision developed because of the growth in 
size of individual schools and the increasing variety in types of instruction. 
This required that some individual should oversee the whole educational 
process in an entire school. The development of the process was most 
pronounced in the famous humanistic schools of the Jesuits, although a 
similar development was apparent in the Academv conducted by John 
Cabin in Geneva. It was in this school that the word "principal" was first 
used to designate the head teacher of a school. 

Development of Administration 
and supervtsion of education in ontario 

Development Prior to 1846 

5. The District Schools Act of 1807,^ the first educational legislation in 
what is now Ontario, was influenced by the existence in Great Britain of 
public schools such as Eton, Harrow, and Rugby. An attempt was made to 
establish a "public school" in each of the eight districts into which Upper 
Canada was divided. It was onlv natural, therefore, that administrative and 
supervisor)' practices common in England at the time should be established 
here. No supervision was exercised by the central authority. Each school 
was governed by a board of trustees appointed by the Lieutenant-Governor; 
and the trustees examined and appointed the teacher, who was free to 
develop the school in accordance with his own ideas. No annual report to 
the central authoritv' was required of the trustees. The almost complete 
absence of control and supervision by the central authoritv^ is noteworthy, 

M7 Geo. Ill, Ch. 6, S.U.C. 


especially since the Act of 1807, which with but minor changes remained 
in force for 46 years, was the foundation of our present system of secondary 
schools. The boards of trustees acted as administrators, and the head 
teacher or principal exercised those functions which would now be classified 
as supervision of instruction. 

6. The Act of 1841^ made an attempt to differentiate between the 
administration and supervision of instruction. The district council was to be 
responsible principally for the provision and maintenance of schools, and 
supervision was to be a statutory dut)' imposed on the boards of common 
school commissioners elected annually in each township. The latter were 
required to operate the schools of the township, to engage and dismiss 
teachers, and to superintend and inspect the schools. The first provision for 
supervision by other than members of local education authorities was made 
in the Act of 1843,- which authorized each district council to appoint a 
district superintendent. His duties were to include examination and certifi- 
cation of teachers and the visitation of each school at least once a year. The 
Act also required district councils to appoint local (city, town, and town- 
ship) superintendents, whose duties in their areas duplicated in general 
those of the district superintendents. However, the local superintendents 
were required to report to the central authority, and were given manv 
administrative duties, such as dividing their areas into local school districts, 
and acting as treasurers of the school fund. 

7. Both British and American practices of the time are reflected in the 
legislation of these years. The local appointment of superintendents was a 
practice adopted from the United States, but the closer relationship to the 
central authority was influenced by the appointment of the first school 
inspectors by the central authority in England in 1839. There, the inspector's 
duty was considered to be "the collection of accurate information and to 
give advice and encouragement, if asked to do so . . .'V they were "to 
abstain from any interference with the instruction, management or discipline 
of the school."^ 

8. From the earliest days provision was made for the eflBcient conduct of 
school business. The Common Schools Act of 1816^ made the treasurer of 
the district the school business oflBcial. He received the district's share of 
the legislative grant and paid it to the teachers of the common schools 
after the district board of education had apportioned it among the various 
schools and after the common school trustees had certified the teachers' 
claims. But the treasurer was a municipal official. The position of school 

M & 5 Vict., Ch. 18, S.P.C. 

=7 Vict., Ch. 29, S.P.C. 

'H. C. Barnard, A Short History of English Education, 1760-1944, London: Univer- 
sity of London Press, 1947, p. 117. 

*Frank Smith, A History of English Elementary Education, 1760-1902, London: Uni- 
versity of London Press, 1931, p. 183. 

'56 Geo. Ill, Ch. 36, S.U.C. 


business official may be considered to have originated with the appointment, 
authorized in 1820, of clerks to district boards of education. By the terms 
of the General School Act of 1841,^ warrants for sums of money to defray 
the expenses of common schools had to be signed by a majority of the 
township school commissioners ( trustees ) . This placed responsibility directly 
on the board members. By law, town clerks were to act also as clerks to the 
common school commissioners. The building and repairing of school-houses 
and the provision of fuel and other necessary materials were placed in the 
hands of the commissioners, each of whom was designated as manager of 
a particular township school. No provision was made in the Act for appoint- 
ment by the common school commissioners of either a secretary or treasurer. 
The Act provided, however, that the clerk of the municipality be the clerk 
of the local superintendent. 

9. In tlie period before 1846, therefore, both administrative and super- 
visory duties were discharged by laymen. Up to this point the development 
had passed through two stages: in the first the work was done by elected 
or appointed boards of trustees or commissioners; in the second it was done 
by a clerk or a district superintendent appointed for the purpose. 

Development Under Ryerson, 1846-1876 

10. An efficient system of inspection, Ryerson wrote in his report of 1846: 

". . . involves the examination and licensing of teachers,— visiting the Schools,— 
discovering errors, and suggesting remedies, as to the organization, classification, 
and methods of teaching in the Schools,— giving counsel and instruction as to their 
management,— carefully examining the pupils,— animating Teachers, Trustees, and 
parents, by conversations, addresses, etc., whenever practicable, imparting vigor, 
by every available means, to the whole School System." 

Ryerson realized that there was no class of officers on which so much 
depended for the efficient and successful operation of elementary schools 
as the local superintendents, and that their proper selection was a matter 
of the greatest importance. They should, he felt, make themselves theoreti- 
cally and practically acquainted with every subject taught in the schools, 
with the best modes of teaching, and with school organization and manage- 
ment. The Act of 1846^ provided for the appointment of one district 
superintendent by each district council.^ The duties of such superintendents 
were: to visit all schools in their districts at least once a year and report on 
progress and general conditions; to advise trustees and teachers in regard 
to school management; to examine candidates for teachers' certificates and 
to grant licences; to revoke hcences of unsuitable teachers; to prevent the 
use of unauthorized textbooks; and to make an armual report to the Chief 

'4 & 5 Vict., Ch. 18, S.P.C. 

^J. G. Hodgins, Documentanj History of Education in Upper Canada, Vol. VI, 1846, 
Toronto: Warwick Bros. & Rutter, 1899, p. 206. 
'9 Vict., Ch. 20, S.P.C. 
'For purposes of the Act, the cities of Toronto and Kingston were classed as districts. 


Superintendent. At the same time, the office of local superintendent^ was 

11. The authorization of school visitors also dates from the passing of 
this Act. Clergymen, municipal councillors, magistrates, and justices of the 
peace were given certain supervisory powers, including the right to advise 
teachers and trustees. Since at that time the majority of teachers were 
untrained, Ryerson believed tliat, to as great an extent as possible, the 
services of persons with a superior education should be secured to assist 
in supervision. 

12. The Act of 1847,- which made cities and towns single units for the 
administration of common schools, provided that superintendents in such 
units be appointed by the board of trustees rather than by the city or 
district council. 

13. In 1850 the right to appoint local superintendents was transferred 
from the district councils to the newly formed county councils. At the same 
time the latter were empowered to appoint either one county superintendent 
or a number of superintendents, each having charge of one or more town- 
ships. However, no superintendent was to have more than 100 teachers 
under his jurisdiction. City and town superintendents continued to be 
appointed by the local boards of school trustees. Ryerson appreciated the 
need for competent superintendents who knew enough about education 
to be able to give teachers real assistance; but suitably qualified persons 
were so few in number that for many years he did not specify any academic 
or professional qualifications for the office. Through circulars he did much 
to guide and train superintendents in their work. Although the emphasis 
during this period was on inspection, which included an assessment of the 
knowledge of pupils in each of the various branches of study, of the 
methods of conducting classes, and of the physical condition of the school, 
there was also, even at this early date, an emphasis on the superintendent's 
duty of assisting teachers to improve their methods.^ 

14. It was not until the Act of 1871,^ however, that a serious attempt 
was made to improve the status of inspection in the province. The office 
of local superintendent was abolished and that of county inspector was 
created. Inspectors were to be appointed by county councils and by the 
trustees of cities and towns from among those who were declared to be 
qualffied by the Council of Public Instruction. Ryerson stated proudly that 
the inspectorate was open only to teachers holding the highest grade of 

'Town and township superintendents. 

=^10 & 11 Vict., Ch. 19, S.P.C. 

'". . . his visits can be made far more essentially useful than they would be were his 
efforts hmited exclusively to the collection of such information as would enable him to 
furnish the desired report. He can, in many instances, aid the Teacher in supplying the 
defects arising from want of training." T. J. Robertson, quoted in J. G. Hodgins, Docu- 
mentary History of Education in Upper Canada. Vol. VIII, 1848-1849, Toronto: King's 
Printer, 1901, p. 54. 

^34 Vict., Ch. 33, S.O. 


certificate in the highest class. Examinations were set for prospective 
inspectors, and a Hst of those ehgible for appointment was announced. 

15. Meanwhile, secondary schools ( grammar schools ) had been brought 
under tlie control of the central authority. In 1855^ the Council of Public 
Instruction was granted power to appoint grammar school inspectors, and 
the first two were appointed in that year. 

16. The Act of 1871^ provided for tlie distribution of school grants to 
high schools on the principle of "pavment by results", a practice based on 
the system introduced in England in 1862. In this way the central authority 
formally extended its control of supervision to include examinations. Part 
of the legislative grant to secondary schools was to be determined by the 
proficiency of the pupils as rated by the inspector and as evidenced by 
the results of written examinations. The evil effects of this system soon 
became apparent and resulted in its discontinuance in 1882, some 15 years 
before it met the same fate in England. 

17. The administration of school business also changed during Ryerson's 
tenure of office. The Common Schools Act of 1846, as stated above, 
abolished the position of local superintendent of common schools and 
conferred his duties on the district superintendents. This meant that in 
towns there was no longer a locally appointed official apportioning and 
accounting for the moneys received from the public treasury. Provision 
was made, however, for appointment by each corporation of school trustees 
of a secretary-treasurer from among its members to keep the minutes of its 
proceedings in a minute book and to be accountable for the moneys col- 
lected in the school section. Other school business was left to the trustees, 
but it is probable that many administrative duties, such as the maintenance 
of school buildings, and the preparation of reports to the district superin- 
tendent, were assigned by the trustees to the secretary-treasurer. The 
School Act for Cities and Towns of 1847 placed all schools in each urban 
municipality under the jurisdiction of one board of trustees. Since boards 
were required to administer the affairs of several schools, their duties be- 
came more complex and, as a result, new administrative procedures 

18. By the Act of 1847^ an ad hoc local education authority was em- 
powered for the first time to appoint its own local superintendent of 
schools. This official tended to become the executive arm of the board. 
Another method of administration employed in a number of school units 
was the adoption of the system of standing committees of the board. The 
Act of 1847 expressly provided that a committee composed of 3 members 
of the board should be assigned the special care of each school. Ryerson 
suggested in his "Circular to the Mayors of Cities and Towns in Upper 

'18 Vict., Ch. 132, Sees. 1-2, S.P.C. 

^34 Vict., Ch. 33, S.O. 

•10 & 11 Vict, Ch. 19, See. 5(4), S.P.C. 


Canada"^ that a "Committee on School Houses" and a "Committee on 
Teachers, School Books, and Schools" be formed. Some of the matters 
which Rverson suggested be referred to these committees were: to provide 
accommodation for schools; to arrange for the repair of premises; to supply 
furnishings, equipment, and fuel; and to supply recommended school 
books to pupils whose parents were indigent. 

19. The Act of 1850- authorized the appointment of a trustee or other 
person to the position of secretary-treasurer. For cities, towns, and incor- 
porated villages it authorized the appointment by the school board of a 
secretary and a superintendent of schools and specified their duties. Most 
duties now classified as "school business" were left under the direct control 
of the school board; the board might delegate them either to the secretary 
or to the superintendent. 

Development Since 1876 

20. The basic pattern of supervision and business administration be- 
came well established during Ryerson's tenure of office. The remaining 
vears of the nineteenth century might be termed a period of consolidation. 
In the late 1880's there were complaints that the schools were over- 
inspected and over-govenied. The Minister in his annual report for 1893 
stated that the annual visits of inspectors were more for examination than 
instruction. By 1896 there were murmurs that, through inspectors, teachers 
were muzzled by the Department.^ The duties of inspectors had by this 
time so multiplied through the addition of such responsibilities as reports, 
teachers' institutes, the conduct of departmental examinations, and lectures 
at the model schools, that they had little time for classroom supervision. 

21. By 1920 a critical point in the administration of supervision had 
been reached. Prescribed qualifications of inspectors were so high and 
salaries so low that there was a dearth of candidates for appointment. The 
position of inspector had come to be regarded as one to which a successful 
principal of a collegiate institute might aspire for his last few years of 
active ser\dce. In 1920 the Minister of Education announced changes in the 
prescribed qualifications for the position, designed to admit elementar)'^ 
school teachers who had secured hio;h standing in their Pass B.A. course. 
In succeeding years a large number of comparativelv young men who had 
had recent teaching experience in elementary schools were appointed as 
inspectors. At the same time the Minister suggested that it would be advan- 
tageous for inspectors to be appointed by the Department of Education 
rather than by county councils, but ten years were to elapse before this 
proposal was carried out. 

22. The work and responsibilities of elementarv school inspectors in- 

\yanuarv, 1848. 

=13 & i4 Vict., Ch. 48, Sec. 12(1), S.P.C. 

'J. G. Althouse, The Ontario Teacher, Unpublished Doctor's Thesis, Universitv of 
Toronto, 1929, pp. 214-215. 


creased rapidly. V. K. Greer, at that time Chief Inspector of PubHc and 
Separate Schools, in his report of 1928 expressed concern at the amount of 
time spent by inspectors in routine administrative duties: 

It is true that at the present time too much of the Inspector's time is con- 
sumed in duties which have not a sufficient bearing on the improvement of the 
work in the classroom. Over a period of years the official reports, correspondence, 
the distribution of grants, etc., have added greatly to the Inspector's duties and 
there is grave danger that routine clerical duties may take precedence over the 
chief function of the Inspector, viz., to show teachers by demonstration teaching 
and by sympathetic suggestions how they may further improve their work in the 

The latter part of this statement shows how the concept of the purpose of 
supersdsion held by officials of the Department of Education had changed 
from one in which the work of the teacher only had to be examined and 
reported upon, to one of co-operation with the teacher to effect improve- 
ment in his work. There can be little doubt that one of the underlying 
reasons for this change was the rapid increase in the proportion of teachers 
with professional training gained thiough attendance at provincially con- 
trolled teacher training institutions— from 22 per cent in 1875 to 95 per cent 
in 1929. 

23. At this time there were three ways of appointing inspectors. Dis- 
trict and separate school inspectors were appointed by the Minister of 
Education. Local education authorities in cities might, if they so desired, 
appoint their own inspectors or superintendents of schools. County inspec- 
tors were appointed by county councils, which tended to be primarily 
interested in inspection as a means of ascertaining the results obtained 
from the expenditure of funds. 

24. The Chief Inspector continued to stress the importance of the 
inspectors' work in the classroom, and urged the inspectors to secure ade- 
quate clerical assistance to relieve them of many routine office duties. The 
following extract from his report of 1928 indicates the relative importance 
placed by the Department on the newer aims of supervision: 

. . . the keynotes of the Inspector's work at the present time are co-operation with 
the people and the giving of real help in school matters and particularlv toward 
improvement in the classroom work. And it is found that these methods are bring- 
ing about greater advancement. The General Annual Reports of the Inspectors 
indicate this closer co-operation and keener interest in the improvement of the 
work done in the schools." 

25. In 1930 an amendment to The Public Schools Act^ decreed that, 
henceforth, inspectors, except those appointed locally in cities, were to be 
appointed by Order-in-Council upon the recommendation of the Minister 

^Report of the Minister of Education. Ontario, 1928, p. 5. 

'Report of the Minister of Education, Ontario, 1928, p. 3. 

"The School Law Amendment Act, 1930, 20 Geo. V, Ch. 63, S.O. 


of Education. Although this change represented an increase in centraHza- 
tion, it did not mean more central control over the actual work in the 
classroom. In the amendment, the first duty of the inspector was defined 
as follows: 

... to bring about improvement in the work done in the classrooms by inspiring 
the teachers and pupils and by sympathetically assisting the teachers to improve 
their practice.^ 

At the same time, inspectors were permitted to secure clerical assistance in 
order to relieve them of many administrative and clerical duties. 

26. A practice designed to provide more assistance for teachers was 
initiated on an experimental basis in September, 1937, at which time a 
supervising teacher was assigned by the Minister to work with one of the 
countv' inspectors. Bv the end of the )'ear, the Minister reported that the 
following results were evident: more assistance was being given to new 
and inexperienced teachers; newer phases of the work, such as health 
teaching, social studies, and games, were receiving more attention; and the 
inspector had more time to meet teachers in groups, to plan the work of 
the inspectorate, and to give more adequate supervision to classroom in- 
struction. By the end of 1947 four supervising teachers had been appointed. 

27. These provisions were not enough, however, to stem the tide of 
the ever increasing administrative duties placed upon inspectors; as new 
policies in education developed, administrative duties occupied more and 
more of their time. In order to provide assistance to inspectors and to 
train prospective inspectors, the Minister, in 1946, began to appoint assis- 
tant inspectors. 

28. The present Superintendent of Elementary Education has stated 
that because of promotional work in connection with township school areas 
and high school districts, because of extensive building programmes, and 
because of additional work required under recent legislative grant plans, 
the elementary school inspector has been called upon to spend a greater 
proportion of his time in administrative work than during anv previous 
period in the history of elementary school supervision in Ontario. 

29. Shortly after the turn of the twentieth century the province was 
divided into three districts for the purpose of secondary school inspection. 
Each high school inspector was required to visit the schools in his district 
at least once a year, and at the end of two years districts were exchanged. 
The inspector was guided by the educational standards prescribed for 
high schools, and it was his duty to see that these were maintained. In 
the inspection of high school premises and the equipment of high schools, 
he had duties comparable to those of a public school inspector. As an 
official of the Department, he prepared the papers for the high school 
entrance and other examinations.^ During this period, under the superin- 

Ubid., Sec. 117 (l)(a). 

"G. W. Ross, The School System of Ontario, New York: Appleton, 1896. 


tendency of Dr. John Seath, the supervision of secondary education reached 
such a peak of "efiBciency" that it has been described as "at once one of 
the most uniformly efficient in the world and one of the most paralysing to 
individual initiative in teacher or school."^ 

30. Since 1871 the statutory powers and duties of a locally appointed 
city school inspector and of the secretary-treasurer of a board have re- 
mained practically unaltered. The latter, as treasurer, is required to receive 
all moneys and account for them, and to disburse them as directed by the 
board; as secretary he is required to keep a full and correct record of the 
proceedings of every meeting of the board and to transmit to the inspector 
aU returns according to a prescribed form. There is no provision in any of 
the Acts for delegating to him any of the other powers and duties of the 
board. However, a city school board employing more than one school in- 
spector is empowered to assign to them such additional powers and duties 
as it may deem expedient. The board is also empowered to appoint such 
other officers as it deems necessary and to prescribe their duties. It has 
been in accordance with this provision, apparently, that school business 
officials have been appointed in some cities of Ontario. Many of the powers 
delegated to these officers are not prescribed duties of the secretar)'- 

Present Organization for, and Administration of, 
THE Supervision of Education 

Under the Central Education Authority 

31. The Department of Education is, essentially, an organization for the 
supervision of educational programmes in publicly supported schools. In 
this respect its activities mav be classified either according to the t)'pe of 
supervisor)' service offered or according to the method of supervision em- 
ployed. Under the first classffication they may be divided into four phases: 
inspection; the improvement of instruction; organizational activities and 
public relations; and business administration. The second classification 
includes supervision by field workers who, through on-the-spot evaluation 
and consultation, attempt to bring about improvement in classroom instruc- 
tion, and supervision b>' officials in the central offices of the Department, 
who co-ordinate the work of the field men and assist in the formulation 
and implementation of new policies. Field workers as well as officials of 
the central office have duties in connection with each of the four phases of 
supervisor)' service enumerated above. 

32. The purposes of "inspection" include the following: to evaluate the 
school programme, plant, and equipment; to determine whether regulations 
of the Department are being followed; and to collect information for the 
Minister and in some cases for schools boards. Inspection is conducted bv 
elementary school inspectors and secondar)' school inspectors. There are 

'Watson Kirkconnell, A Canadian Headmaster, Toronto: Clarke, Irwin, 1935. 


116 of the former, all of whom reside within their inspectorates; 91 of them 
are public school inspectors, and 25 are separate school inspectors. The 
work of the elementary school inspectors is directed and co-ordinated from 
Toronto by a Superintendent of Elementary Education and 4 assistant super- 
intendents. There are 23 secondary school inspectors, with headquarters in 
Toronto: 14 high school inspectors, directly responsible to the Superin- 
tendent of Secondary Education; and 9 vocational school inspectors.^ Those 
in the latter group, together with an Assistant Director of Vocational Edu- 
cation, are responsible through the Director of Vocational Education to 
the Superintendent of Secondary Education. 

33. "Improvement of instruction" connotes primarily helping teachers 
to improve their practice through the proper use of materials and supplies, 
through the use of effective methods, bv the introduction of new materials 
and techniques, and by the enrichment of the school programme. The De- 
partment assists in the improvement of instruction in two wavs. It operates 
a teacher-training programme, and it provides in-service training through 
inspectors and summer school courses. Supervisors of special subjects, such 
as the Directors of Art, Music, Physical Education, and Guidance, and the 
Inspector of Auxiliary Classes, all with headquarters in Toronto, are also 
directly concerned with the improvement of classroom instruction. 

34. "Organizational activities and public relations" are also important 
functions of the Department of Education. They include such actions as 
campaigns for the formation of larger high school districts and township 
school areas, and explanation of departmental policies to the general public. 

35. By "business administration" is meant such aspects of supervision 
as the determination of grants, preparation and analysis of accounts, ap- 
proval of building sites and plans, preparation of records, analysis of atten- 
dance, and similar matters. Here again, elementary and secondarv' school 
inspectors are the field workers. From them the departmental oflBcials con- 
cerned with business administration obtain most of the basic data for their 

Supervision Under Local Education Authorities 

36. Little supervision is entrusted to local education authorities. An 
exception to this general rule occurs in the case of 12 of the larger cities, 
which have chosen to appoint their own inspectors, subject to the approval 
of the Minister. In these 12 cities there are 25 inspectors. Thev are not 
always given this title; some have the title "director of education", others 
"superintendent of schools", and still others "inspector of public schools". 
Some have supervision over both public elementary and secondare' schools, 
others over public schools only. 

37. It is in business administration that local authorities have the great- 
est freedom. All boards are required to appoint secretary-treasurers and 

'Report of fhe Minister of Education. Ontario, 1948, p. 270. 


are empowered to assign whatever duties they see fit to their chief admin- 
isti*ative oflBcers. Many of them have appointed business administrators. 
In some cases,' as in the City of London, the Superintendent of Schools is 
also the Business Administrator and has under him an official in charge of 
business affairs. In other cities, such as Toronto, the Director of Education 
and the Business Administrator have co-ordinate authority. 

38. Local education authorities have a great but undeveloped avenue 
for the control of supervision through the use of school principals as super- 
visors. There is a growing tendency, especially in large schools and systems, 
to free the principal from instructional duties and even from adminis- 
trative duties, in order to make more time available for him to work with 
the teaching staff for the improvement of instruction in the school. Some 
local education authorities have appointed local supervisors of special 
subjects, such as music, art, guidance, and auxiliary classes. Other authori- 
ties, unable to provide an inspector of their own, have appointed a super- 
vising principal. 

Trainiiig of Supervisory Personnel 

39. Elementary school inspectors in Ontario are generally experienced 
and well-trained individuals. They must hold a Public School Inspector's 
Certificate, whether they supervise public or separate schools. To obtain 
this certificate the candidate must hold either an honours or a pass degree 
from a British university with a standard of at least 66 per cent in the final 
examinations, and must have successfully completed prescribed courses in 
pedagogy. He must have a Permanent First Class Teaching Certificate, and 
he must have taken a prescribed course in agriculture and in education or 
auxiliary education. He is required to have had at least seven years' success- 
ful teaching experience in the schools of the Ontario provincial system, 
at least two of which must have been in elementary schools. He must pass 
a medical examination conducted by a medical examiner appointed bv the 
Minister and possess personal qualifications satisfactory to the Minister. 
He is also required to pass a written and an oral examination in adminis- 
tration and supervision, based on the school Acts, regulations, programmes 
of study, textbooks, and manuals pertaining to elementary education in 

40. Some provision is made by the Department of Education for in- 
service training of inspectors. A considerable number are invited to act as 
members of staflF for departmental summer courses. From time to time 
inspectors are permitted by the Minister to attend or teach summer school 
courses in other provinces or in the United States. The Superintendent of 
Elementary Education and the assistant superintendents endeavour to visit 
the inspectors regularly to discuss problems with them and to render any 
assistance required. 


41. A prospective principal of an elementary school is not required 
to possess any prescribed qualifications except an elementary school teach- 
ing certificate valid in Ontario. The Department of Education, however, 
has recently provided two-week refresher courses for principals of elemen- 
tary schools. The gratifying response indicates that principals feel a need 
for such training. 

42. High school inspectors are specialists in particular subjects. Most 
of them have had successful experience as secondary school principals, 
and all hold a High School Principal's Certificate. Inspectors in the Voca- 
tional Education Branch are also specialists and have had successful ex- 
perience as teachers or principals. At the present time there is no prescribed 
training or certification for secondary school inspectors. 

43. The Department of Education grants a High School Principal's 
Certificate but does not prescribe specialized professional training or ex- 
perience. A teacher who holds a permanent teaching certificate valid in 
high schools and who has had at least three years' successful teaching 
experience in such schools may, upon the recommendation of his inspector, 
be granted a High School Principal's Certificate. For a Vocational School 
Principal's Certificate, however, successful completion of a summer school 
course is required. Heads of departments in secondary schools must hold 
specialist standing in their subject or subjects. 

Duties and Training of School Business Officials 

44. The duties and responsibilities of a typical school business oflBcial 
in Ontario are as follows: 

(1) To supervise the operation of the offices of the board. 

(2) To prepare the annual budget. 

(3) To supervise the operation and maintenance of school buildings. 

(4) To keep proper books of account and control expenditures within the 

(5) To issue cheques, prepare payrolls, and pay invoices of account. 

(6) To prepare annual financial statements and forms for payment of 
legislative grants. 

(7) To purchase school supplies. 

( 8 ) To handle claims, insurance of buildings, and other types of insurance. 

(9) To maintain inventories of supphes and equipment. 

( 10 ) In co-operation with other oflBcials and the board, to plan new school 
buildings and accommodation, in particular such items as come 
under the heading of capital outlay. 
Many school business officials also act as treasurer of the board and in 
that capacity are responsible for receiving, disbursing, and accounting for 
all school moneys. Only a few of the functions of a business official as 
outlined above are prescribed by law as duties of the secretarv; the others 
are duties of the board delegated to the school business official. 


45. Every local education authority, no matter how small its juris- 
diction, employs a business official, although in the majority of cases he is 
a secretary-treasurer on a part-time basis. The duties of a secretary- 
treasurer increase in proportion to the size of the administrative unit; but 
it is usually only in cities that secretary-treasurers are employed on a full- 
time basis. Where a full-time official is employed, the tendency is for the 
board to delegate more and more executive authorit)' to him. Thus in all 
except the larger urban centres in Ontario the secretary-treasurer or busi- 
ness administrator has became the executive arm of the board. 

46. Two factors have combined to discourage the practice of having a 
single executive officer employed by a board to supervise the whole edu- 
cational programme. In the first place, the powers of a local education 
authoritv with respect to supervision of education are strictly limited by 
the central authority. Thus a supervisory official, even though appointed 
by the board, derives most of his authority from the Acts and regulations 
of the Department, whereas the significant authorit)^ of the business official 
derives directly from the board. In the second place, while every local 
authority is required to employ a school business official, only a very few 
employ a supervisory staflF. Although there is no suggestion that any busi- 
ness official wishes to attain ascendency over the chief educational official, 
the very nature of their respective powers together with the derivation of 
their offices tends to favour the business official. 

47. Four of the ten cities which appoint their own inspectors have 
adopted a unitary system of responsibility in which the superintendent or 
director of education, as the case may be, is also the secretary-treasurer of 
the board. Some cities employ a director of education responsible for the 
supervision of instruction in both public and secondary schools and a busi- 
ness administrator with co-ordinate authority responsible directly to the 
board. One large city employs three officials with co-ordinate authority: a 
director of elementary education, a superintendent of secondary education, 
and a business administrator. Another large city has a superintendent of 
schools, with supervisory powers over the elementary schools only, and a 
business administrator. The remaining cities and towns follow one or other 
of these plans. 

48. No special training is provided for, and no certfficate is required of, 
school business officials. 

Recommendations Relating to the Supervision of Education 
Organization for Supervision 

49. Our ultimate aim in planning a system of educational administra- 
tion for Ontario has been to establish large units within which an elected 
education authority would have jurisdiction over all stages of education 
in all publicly supported schools. The Minister might delegate to such a 


board control of much of the externa and interna of education, thus effect- 
ing decentrahzation in educational administration and supervision and 
achieving unification of the educational programme. 

50. Unfortunately, since it has been necessary to continue the inde- 
pendent administration of separate schools,^ a unitary system of adminis- 
tration cannot be attained. Furthermore, since we have not deemed it 
advisable to recommend the mandatory establishment of regional boards of 
education, many public school boards will operate independently of boards 
administering post-elementarv education. Under these circumstances, a uni- 
form system of supervision of education cannot be established; it must be 
adapted to meet the conditions imposed bv the varying types of admin- 
istrative organization. 

51. In our opinion the programmes in separate schools should continue 
to be supervised by officials residing in a local inspectorate but appointed 
by the Minister of Education. In order to promote unification of super- 
vision, all supervisory officials in a region, whether appointed by the 
Minister or by a local education authority, should co-operate to improve 
instruction and the general educational programme. We recommend 

(a) that the supervision of instruction in separate schools be conducted 
by officials appointed by, and responsible to, the Minister of Edu- 

(b) that such an official be designated "inspector of separate schools"^ 
and be required to reside in his inspectorate. 

52. Decentralization of supervision will be feasible in those regions 
which adopt the urban or rural regional board of education type of admin- 
istration.^ The most effective method of supervision in such regions will 
be that in which, subject to the approval of the Minister, the regional 
board employs its own ofiicials for the supervision of instruction in public 
elementary and secondary schools. Regional boards of education should 
be permitted to appoint a "regional director of education", assistant direc- 
tors, and a "regional business administrator" with responsibility for the 
conduct of the business affairs of the board. Assistant directors should 
be qualified as inspectors of elementary and secondary schools, and should 
be responsible for the supervision of instruction in the public elementary 
and secondary schools of the region. Supervising teachers might be ap- 
pointed to work in co-operation with the assistant directors. Other super- 
visory functions will, of course, be exercised by principals, and by heads 
of departments in secondary schools and junior colleges. 

53. Two advantages of supervision organized under regional directors 
of education are as follows: 

'See Chapter XIX. 

^n regions where all supervisory officials are appointed by the Minister, the inspector 
of separate schools would also normally be an assistant superintendent. See paragraph 56, 

"See Chapter XI. 


(1) There wiU be integration of the work of pubHc elementary and post- 
elementary schools through the appointment of a director and assis- 
tant directors of education responsible for the supervision of education 
at all levels. 

(2) There will be integration through the conduct of the business aflFairs 
of the board by the business administrator. 

54. We recommend 

(a) that a regional board of education be empowered to appoint a 
regional director of education and assistant directors, to administer 
the educational programme and to supervise instruction in public 
elementary and secondary schools; 

(b) that a regional board of education be empowered to employ a busi- 
ness administrator to conduct the business affairs of the board. 

55. Where a regional board of education employs a regional director 
of education and other supervisory officials, we believe that there should 
be a unitary system of responsibility for business administration and super- 
vision. Those cities, however, in which in the past a board of school trus- 
tees has been accustomed to appoint a director (or superintendent) of 
education and a business administrator with co-ordinate authorit)^ should 
be permitted to continue the practice. Accordingly we recommend 

that, except in those cities where present practice differs and where 
the board elects to continue it, the business administrator be respon- 
sible to the regional board of education through the director of education. 
36. Where the regional board of education type of administration is 
not adopted, and where the regional board of education does not elect to 
appoint its own supervisory officials, control of supervision should not be 
delegated to local education authorities. For these regions, therefore, it 
will be necessary for the Minister to appoint supervisory oflBcials, but a 
unified system of supervision should be organized. For each region or 
group of regions a "regional superintendent of education" and assistant 
superintendents should be appointed by the Minister, and should be re- 
quired to reside locally. A regional superintendent, unlike a regional 
director, should be assigned responsibility for the supervision of instruction 
in separate schools as well as in public and secondary schools. We 

that, where supervision of instruction in public, separate, and secondarij 
schools is conducted by officials appointed by the Minister of Education, 
(i) such officials be required to reside locally; 

( ii ) for a region ( or group of regions ) the supervisory organization con- 
sist of a regional superintendent of education and assistant superin- 
tendents, responsible to the Minister through the superintendents 
of elementary and secondary education of the Department of 


57. Each local education authority will require the services of a secre- 
tary-treasurer or business administrator to conduct the business of the board, 
as recommended in the case of regional boards of education. According, we 

that each local education authority be required to appoint a secretary 
and a treasurer, a secretary-treasurer, or a business administrator. 

58. Supervisor}' officials appointed by the Minister should be relieved 
as much as possible from routine administrative and clerical duties. Those 
aspects of business administration which in the past have been a respon- 
sibilit)' of provincial inspectors and have consumed so much of their time 
should be a function of an employee in each region— appointed for the 
purpose by the Minister— attached to the staflF of the regional superintendent 
of education. We recommend 

that the Minister appoint an assistant to the staff of each regional super- 
intendent to conduct the business administration of the office of the 
regional superintendent. 

59. The supervision of instruction in junior colleges should be con- 
ducted by supervisors who are specialists in subjects of the programme. 
Owing to the limited number of officials that will be required in the pro- 
vince for this purpose, such officials should be appointed by the Minister 
of Education to supervise instruction in all junior colleges. But general 
supervision and administration of the junior colleges located in a region 
should be a responsibility of the regional superintendent or regional direc- 
tor of education. We recommend 

(a) that supervision of instruction in junior colleges and junior college 
departments be conducted by officials appointed by the Minister 
of Education and attached to the Division of Further Education, 
Department of Education; 

(b) that general supervision and administration of junior colleges and 
junior college departments, subject to the supervision of instruction 
specified above, be a responsibility of regional superintendents and 
regional directors of education. 

Qualifications of Supervisory Off[icials 

60. The attainment of an adequate educational programme depends to 
a large extent on the work of supervisory officials. They should be indi- 
viduals with high personal, academic, and professional qualifications who 
have had wide experience as teachers and administiators in schools in 
more than one stage of the educational system. Since their duties may in- 
clude the supervision of instruction in both elementary and secondary 
schools, we recommend 

(a) that a candidate for appointment as regional director or regional 
superintendent of education, regional assistant director or assistant 


superintendent of education, or inspector of separate schools be 
required to hold a certificate of qualification as an inspector of 
elementary and secondary schools; 

(b) that an Elementary and Secondary School Inspectors Certificate 
be authorized by the Minister of Education; 

(c) that an Elementary and Secondary School Inspector's Certificate 
be awarded to a candidate who 

(i) holds from a university a degree approved by the Minister as 
to standard and content of courses, with a standard of 66 per 
cent on the final examinations, and for which English has 
been taken throughout the course; 
(ii) preferably holds a post-graduate degree in education; 
(iii) holds a Permanent Elementary School Teaching Certificate 
and a Permanent Secondary School Teaching Certificate or 
their equivalents; 
(iv) has had at least six years' successful teaching experience in 
the schools of the Ontario provincial system, or the equivalent; 
(v) has passed a medical examination conducted by a medical 

examiner appointed by the Minister; 
(vi) possesses high personal qualifications; 

(vii) has passed written and oral examinations on supervision, 
, based on the Acts, regulations, programmes of study, and 
textbooks pertaining to elementary and secondary education 
in Ontario. 

61. We appreciate that for some years there may not be a sufficient 
number of persons, holding the quahfications we have specified, available 
for appointment to senior supervisory positions. Nor is it intended that 
those at present in such positions be disqualified if they do not possess 
these qualifications. Accordingly, we recommend 

that for appointments in the immediate future to the positions of direc- 
tor, superintendent, assistant director, and assistant superintendent care 
be taken to ensure that at least one senior supervisory official in a 
region shall have had successftd teaching experience in an elementary 
school, and at least one other shall have had successful teaching ex- 
perience in a secondary school. 

62. Principals of schools have important supervisory functions to per- 
form. We feel that prospective principals should undergo a course of train- 
ing leading to a principal's certificate. We recommend 

(a) that summer school courses be established by the Minister of Edu- 
cation leading to an Elementary School Principal's Certificate, a 
Secondary School Principal's Certificate, and a Junior College Prin- 
cipaVs Certificate, and that, after due notice has been given, pos- 
session of the appropriate certificate be required as a condition of 
appointment to the principalship of an elementary school of four 
or more classrooms, of a secondary school, or of a junior college; 


(b) that an Elementary School Principal's Certificate be granted to a 
candidate who possesses personal qualifications satisfactory to the 
Minister, holds a Permanent Elementary School Teaching Cer- 
tificate or its equivalent, has demonstrated evidence of adminis- 
trative ability, and has successfully completed the prescribed de- 
partmental summer school course or its equivalent; 

(c) that a Secondary School PrincipaVs Certificate be granted to a can- 
didate who possesses personal qualifications satisfactory to the 
Minister, holds a Permanent Secondary School Teaching Certificate 
or its equivalent, has demonstrated evidence of administrative 
ability, and has successfully completed the prescribed departmental 
summer school course or its equivalent; 

{d) that a Junior College Principal's Certificate be granted to a candi- 
date who possesses personal qualifications satisfactory to the Min- 
ister, holds a Permanent Junior College Teaching Certificate or its 
equivalent, has demonstrated evidence of administrative ability, 
and has successfully completed the prescribed departmental sum- 
mer school course or its equivalent. 

Qualifications of Business Administrators 

63. It is normally desirable that a business administrator should be ex- 
perienced in both accounting and educational administration. The desire 
of the school business officials at present employed in the province to give 
the best possible service to their boards and communities is shown by their 
advocacy of the establishment of a special course on school business admin- 
istration leading to a certificate to be issued by the Department of Edu- 
cation.^ We recommend 

(a) that a School Business Administrators Certificate be authorized by 
the Minister of Education; 

(b) that a School Business Administrator's Certificate be awarded to a 
candidate ivho successfully completes a summer school course of 
five weeks' duration established and operated by the Department 
of Education; 

(c) that, for admission to this course, applicants be required to have 
had several years' success